Uncommon Man'

Morris Doyle helped guide Stanford for half a century.

January/February 1998

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Barbara Roupe remembers the men who dropped by her family's house in Berkeley when she was growing up. The visitors included some big figures in Stanford history -- among them Bill Hewlett, David Packard and Frederick Terman. They came to talk to her dad, Morris Doyle, a San Francisco lawyer who helped guide Stanford for the last 50 years. Says Roupe, '59, JD '76: "He was crazy about the place."

A lot of us are. But few gave of themselves like Doyle, who died in his sleep December 11 at age 88. A member of the University's Board of Trustees for 20 years, he was its chair from 1962 to 1964. Doyle, '29, also served on the Alumni Association Board, the Hoover Institution's Board of Overseers and the Law School's Board of Visitors. And he took time from his law practice to raise money for Stanford.

Last month, in recognition of his "unique and outstanding service to the University," Doyle received the Degree of Uncommon Man award at a San Francisco dinner. Created in 1953, the award has been given only 19 times in the last 44 years. Its name is drawn from a 1949 magazine article by Herbert Hoover, Class of 1895, in which he exhorted citizens to "rise to leadership -- in other words, to be uncommon." Doyle's unexpected death came just nine days after he was given the honor.

Erika Check, '99, is an intern at Stanford magazine.

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