Radio millionaire sues Georgetown over a hurt ego
Scott K. Ginsburg (LAW ’78), a Georgetown millionaire who made his fortune in the radio business, filed a lawsuit against the University last Monday because, apparently, it hurt his ego. He hopes to recover upwards of the $7.5 million he donated beginning in 2000, which was intended to fund the construction of a new fitness center for the law school.
The center was supposed to be branded the Scott K. Ginsburg Health and Fitness Center, written in large bold letters on the outside of the building with his picture displayed inside, according to the Dallas Morning News.
Though the center has since been built, Ginsburg’s name is nowhere to be found on campus or even on the school’s website: In 1999, the Securities and Exchange Commission accused him of leaking inside information to his brother and father, and the SEC won the lawsuit.
After the jury ruled against him, the University sent him a letter thanking him for his support and asked to revise the agreement so that naming rights were no longer part of the deal. The school hoped to avoid negative media surrounding the SEC decision, but Ginsburg said he did not sign the revised agreement, which offended him.
“There is a total void of mentioning me or my participation with the law school campus, and it has created a terrible anxiety for me… I have misjudged the school’s intent and now have realized that my role at Georgetown is sadly different than I thought it had been,” wrote Ginsburg in an email to Georgetown Vice President of Strategic Development and External Affairs Kevin Conry, according to the Dallas Morning News.
This blatant refusal to acknowledge his greatness hurt his feelings. After making $17 billion in the radio business, opening expensive restaurants, selling exotic cars, and dappling in the digital-ad business, Ginsburg wanted to show off his money in a new way. He donated $5 million to the law center in March 2000 and $2.5 million more over the next 10 years hoping to flaunt his wealth in a more philanthropic manner. “Let me suggest that I don’t have a small ego,” Ginsburg told the Dallas Observer in 1999.
Georgetown’s timidity in regards to bad press dashed his hopes of seeing his name on a law school gym, though the University did not fail to continue to ask him for more money, according to the lawsuit.
“Georgetown not only was not in fact committed to recognizing Ginsburg’s generosity by naming the sports center for him, but each of the foregoing oral and written representations to him about its claimed commitment was false, made only to entice him to give Georgetown more money,” the lawsuit reads.
Editor’s Note: The original headline of this post read “Yet another millionaire sues Georgetown over a hurt ego,” which is somewhat misleading given the fact that Vox doesn’t know of any similar cases.
Photo: Steve Madsen via Flickr