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Thornburgh Room

Thornburgh Room

The Thornburgh Room, the symbolic center of the Thornburgh Forum on Law and Public Policy, celebrates Dick Thornburgh as an outstanding Pennsylvanian.  The room provides an accessible, light-filled space that presents highlights of the Dick Thornburgh Collection, an extensive archive of personal papers, photographs, video and audio. 

The Thornburgh Room is adjacent to the Hillman Library’s main entrance, the natural teak walls and spectacular floor-to-ceiling windows draw attention to the new facility.  The use of glass to create transparency and light serves as an architectural metaphor for Dick Thornburgh’s dedication to making government transparent and accessible to the people it serves.  Comfortable furnishings invite library visitors to learn about Dick Thornburgh’s life through the materials on display, or to simply take advantage of the bright space for reading or study.

Large glass cases flank the entrance and provide museum quality display space for the Collection.  Custom-designed teak study tables feature drawers that allow for the display of artifacts and original documents under glass table tops.  The room displays will change periodically to create a living, evolving exhibition.  Computers provide direct online access to the Dick Thornburgh Web site, and the room’s media center displays more than 500 photographs from the Thornburgh archives on a rotating basis.

The Thornburgh Room has been designed to be fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, reflecting Dick and Ginny Thornburgh’s longstanding devotion to disability rights.

Judge Jay C. Waldman Seminar Room

Named in honor of Dick Thornburgh’s revered colleague, the Judge Jay C. Waldman Seminar Room is housed within the Thornburgh Room. 

“My valued colleague and friend, Jay Waldman, spent many years in the office just outside mine.  Therefore, it is particularly meaningful that the Judge Jay C. Waldman Seminar Room is a beautifully appointed room within the Thornburgh center.”

After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1969, Jay C. Waldman began his career by clerking for a judge on the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas.  Following work in private practice, Waldman served as an assistant U.S. attorney in Pittsburgh, at which time he met Dick Thornburgh, who was then the U.S. attorney for Western District of Pennsylvania.  When Thornburgh became assistant attorney general for the U.S. Department of Justice’s criminal division Waldman served as his deputy assistant attorney general.  Waldman managed Thornburgh’s successful campaign for Pennsylvania governor, and upon Thornburgh’s election, was appointed the Governor’s general counsel.  Waldman served as judge in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, and had been nominated by the President to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit prior to his untimely death in 2003.