Harry Huge (born 1937) is a practicing attorney, philanthropist, and venture capitalist in South Carolina, Charleston. Mr. Huge received his BA from Nebraska Wesleyan University (1959) and his Doctor of Law degree from Georgetown University Law School (1963). Huge was awarded an honorary degree by his alma mater – Nebraska Wesleyan University – in 2005, and the College of Charleston in 2017.
Mr Huge practices law nationally and internationally in the areas of commercial litigation in federal and state courts, international business and transaction law, corporate matters, including securities, venture capital, biotechnology, communication, and investment transactions.
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Mr Huge was actively involved in the civil rights movement, serving as President of the Voter Education Project in Atlanta, which registered black voters throughout the south. During his law career, Mr Huge has been involved in several landmark cases.
Huge was the plaintiff's attorney in the case of Blankenship v Boyle, a ruling which enabled a more democratic process in selection of mine union leadership. Huge serves as a Trustee regarding several asbestos settlement trusts, including the Shook & Fletcher Asbestos Settlement Trust, Armstrong World Industries Asbestos Personal Injury Settlement Trust, and the Owens-Corning/Fibreboard Asbestos Personal Injury Trust. Huge is co-counsel representing some 4,000 family members of the victims of the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Mr Huge also served from 1977 to 1981 as a member of the President’s General Advisory Committee on Arms Control and Strategic Weapons.
Mr Huge has served on many boards, including Nebraska Wesleyan University’s Board of Governors, the Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina, and the Board of Advisors of Dr Robert Gallo’s Institute of Human Virology at the University of Maryland Medical School.
Harry Huge has rendered great services to the Republic of Estonia. At the end of the 1980s, when he first arrived in Estonia, he met with Arnold Rüütel, Endel Lippmaa, and other political leaders of the time. These meetings prompted him to volunteer as the foreign representative of Estonia at a time when the Estonian state did not actually exist. On the eve of Estonia’s restoration of independence, from 1990 to 1991, he represented Estonia’s interests in Washington, for which he was awarded with the Medal of the Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana in 2006. In November of 2010, Mr Huge was named an Honorary Consul of the Republic of Estonia for the state of South Carolina.
Harry Huge's contacts with the University of Tartu began in 2006 when he visited the University for the first time in order to establish collaborative contacts between UT and Nebraska Wesleyan University whose major sponsor he is. As a result of his active mediation, a partnership agreement was signed with Nebraska Wesleyan University (NWU) in 2007, and with the College of Charleston (CK) in 2013. The student exchanges are supported by travel grants from the Harry and Reba Huge Foundation, founded by Harry Huge. Thanks to this, the opportunity to study in Nebraska and Charleston is very popular among students. During eleven years, 51 students from the University of Tartu have participated in the mobility and the University of Tartu has hosted 32 students from the NWU and CK.
Thanks to the dedicated support by Harry Huge, several cultural exchanges and scholars' visits to the University of Tartu have taken place. He supported the NWU Mixed Choir’s very popular concert tour in Estonia and Sweden in 2011, and tours by the NWU basketball teams in 2011 and 2012. In addition, he has supported the visits and public lectures by Professor Lawrence Mohr, personal physician of several U.S. presidents in 2009, and by Dr. Robert Gallo, one of the discoverers of HI virus. Through these contacts, UT medical researchers have been offered an opportunity to become members of the Global Virus Network, a coalition comprised of leading virologists spanning more than 20 countries worldwide.
For over a decade the Harry and Reba Foundation has invested in the brightest minds and enterpreneurial projects through their generous support. In the last three years, he has supported the participation of entrepreneurial young people from the University of Tartu in a program “Network Globally, Act Locally” (NGAL) where innovative local and US partner university students develop their business ideas both in Estonia and the United States.
More recently, Mr Huge has built a new venture capital fund investing in Baltic-region startups, Change Ventures. The Fund presents US-based investors with a unique opportunity to invest in emerging growth companies from countries bordering the Baltic Sea.
Wishing to thank Harry Huge for contributing to the promotion of Estonian-US educational relations, and given his outstanding achievements in introducing the University of Tartu and Estonia to the United States, the university is pleased to nominate Harry Huge as Honorary Fellow of the University of Tartu.