By Callie Ewing, BA ’03 MH ’22
The father of seven children, Illinois State Senator William Haine led a career in public service marked by a heartfelt concern for the greater good and significant contributions to his communities both local and statewide. After serving in Vietnam, he earned his law degree from Saint Louis University. Through his five terms on the Madison County Board, four terms as the Madison County state’s attorney, and five terms as state senator, he – along with his wife, Anna – instilled in their children the love of truth and justice that was foundational to his work and to their family life. Six of his children would go on to further cultivate this love at UD.
Haine’s efforts often gained bipartisan support. Among many things, he worked hard to increase access to medical care, environmental protection, criminal rehabilitation and protection of children both unborn and born, just to list a small sample. Haine’s hero was Abraham Lincoln, and in 2016, his children gifted him with a statue of the 16th U.S. president, with a plaque inscribed with these words from Lincoln’s second inaugural address: “With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in.”
These words, suggested his children, best captured the spirit of their father’s final political race and term. “What a legacy you have given to us,” they wrote to both of their parents. “You kept the Faith, pursued public service and the common good for all, and were leaders in your community. You took difficult public stances based on principles and defied the momentary conventions for a longer view of history. You taught us how to be Christian citizens. As you both look back on this long and beneficial public career, your pride is well-placed.”
As Anna Haine explained at a recent event honoring the newly established Senator William R. Haine Leadership Scholarship at UD, “[Our children] came to see him as a father to the larger community as well as their own father. The task of making justice work became the theme of our household. During those years, Bill was always there for his family, to provide his love, humor, guidance, protection and discipline in all the common experiences of growing up.”
When Anna Haine married her husband in 1971, he was “a young man in law school who dreamed of making public service his life’s work. He always had an acute sense of responsibility for the well-being of his community.” This sense of responsibility persisted throughout Haine’s life and career, and it is what led his former law partner, Randall Bono, to establish the endowed scholarship in Haine’s honor.
To be considered for this scholarship, students will write an essay about how the love of truth and justice are essential to a life of public service. “I think it’s important to understand the vision of leadership that the Haine family is sharing with future generations of UD students through this scholarship and through asking students to reflect on these important concepts in their essay,” said Interim Provost Tammy Leonard, Ph.D., at the ceremony celebrating the scholarship’s endowment.
“It’s fundamental to my understanding of leadership, and I think it’s fundamental to the values of leadership that we try to instill here at the University of Dallas, that leadership is … developed and cultivated in the hearts and minds of individuals who simply decide each day to show up, to work hard and to act on principles that they hold fast,” added Leonard. “The love of truth and justice are two such principles that UD, in particular, holds fast. We intentionally reflect upon them with our students, and we hope that our students, through their engagements with each other, come to know them intimately. I think it’s through this intimate relationship that the love of truth and justice is formed and strengthened in a way that allows our students to really change the world.”
Dean of Constantin College of Liberal Arts Philip Harold observed that while this scholarship will of course help its recipients financially, “it will also help them think about the connections between the love of truth and justice and public service.”
Because, Harold reflected, UD’s Core Curriculum requires specific courses in specific disciplines rather than permitting incoming freshmen to take any classes they like, it helps to shape their minds and hearts so that they become people who can think well about these things, asking themselves, “‘What should I desire in my life? What will actually make me happy? What will lead to my flourishing and the flourishing of those around me?’ The answers to these questions can only be provided by a love of truth and justice. It is a love of truth and justice that is at the origin of authentic public service. … There have to be people like Senator Haine who take responsibility for the common good, think about what the community as a whole needs, and orient their lives toward achieving that.”
He added, “Education turns out to be not at all about satisfying desires, but about becoming a certain type of person, a person open to the world, using their reason to act with others to pursue truth and justice for those near them and for the greater good of the whole. Senator Haine is a model for us here. While he is justly celebrated for his legislative accomplishments, he was most proud of those near him, his family, and as far as the type of person he was, one testimony stands out: ‘No one was more of a gentleman than Haine.’”
As Leonard noted, “The Haine Scholarship not only allows us to recognize and provide financial assistance to students in pursuit of this world-changing relationship with truth and justice, but it allows those students served by the scholarship to have ripple effects throughout our UD community, and those ripples don’t stop there – they flow out as students graduate and engage society through their chosen professions.”
Anna Haine concluded, “Bill’s experience, faith, vision, integrity and political skill during his 10 years on the county board, his 14 years as state’s attorney, and his 16 years as state senator, were a boon to his family, to the people in his district and to the people of the state of Illinois. In all of his work, Bill exemplified the motto of the University of Dallas, love ye truth and justice. I am so grateful that God blessed us with the will, the strength and the means for Bill to exercise his leadership during his 40 years in public office. All his life, with personal integrity and a strong faith, Bill worked to help the whole community by using the government to serve people. May the recipients of the Senator William R. Haine Leadership Scholarship go on in life to do the same.”
To learn more about contributing to this scholarship or establishing your own, please contact Associate Director of Development Veronica Moreno at 972-265-5846 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or go directly here, select "Other" from the dropdown menu and type "Senator William R. Haine Leadership Scholarship" to designate your gift.