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Georgetown University Sued for $7.5 Million Over Fitness Center Naming Rights

An alumnus is suing Georgetown University for $7.5 million because the fitness center for which he donated money to build is not named for him.

Scott Ginsburg, a Dallas businessman and Georgetown University Law alumnus, is suing the Washington, DC, school for breach of contract and fraud and is asking for $7.5 million because the naming rights agreement for the fitness center in which he donated money to build was not honored after he was found civilly liable for insider trading.

In 2000, Ginsburg donated $5 million to the Georgetown Law Center to build a fitness center, and the center's representatives agreed to name the facility the Scott K. Ginsburg Health and Fitness Center, according to the complaint filed in early March. At the time the agreement was being discussed, Ginsberg was under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for allegedly disclosing non-public information to his father and brother. He told Georgetown representatives about the investigation, but they did not express any concerns about naming the facility after him, according to the complaint.

Ginsburg's donation was publicized by the university in press releases, which referred to the facility as the Scott K. Ginsburg Health and Fitness Center.

After Ginsburg was found civilly liable for insider trading in 2002, the Georgetown Law dean asked him to sign an agreement relinquishing the naming rights to the fitness center. Ginsburg refused to sign, and the university continued to acknowledge the original agreement in correspondences with him until 2009, according to the complaint.

Ginsberg pledged to donate an additional $11 million to the university in 2003. The university received $2.5 million of the donation, which he also is asking to retrieve.

“My goal is to get the funds returned and have an opportunity to continue our family's largesse in the Dallas area,” Ginsburg told the Dallas Business Journal.

The facility opened in 2004 and is known as the Georgetown Law Sport & Fitness Center.

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