The University of Nevada, Reno Honor Court was dedicated in 1997 and celebrates the contributions of campus and community leaders. The Honor Court, with its tranquil and beautiful park-like setting, is situated at the south end of campus and is adjacent to the University's historic Quadrangle. Towering elm trees nearby were planted in 1908 and the Quadrangle, modeled after Thomas Jefferson's design for the University of Virginia, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The dramatic 45,000-pound, 20-foot granite obelisk listing the university's Philanthropists anchors Honor Court to the south. A series of impressive pillars, carved from 200,000 pounds of white granite mined from the nearby Sierra Nevada Mountains, features the names of major donors, award-winning faculty, students, employees and community members who have contributed to the university's history and success.
The centerpiece of Honor Court is a gazebo with trellises of blue and white flowering Wisteria. The flowering vines and the adjacent rose garden are among the plants selected for Honor Court by the University Arboretum. A peaceful and natural boulder fountain flanks the Patron area of Honor Court. The engraved pillars, ranging from 10 to 14 feet tall and from rough cut to polished granite, were situated naturally into the garden by Honor Court designer and sculptor Johannes Schwartlander. Struck by the beauty of the campus, he incorporated the historical element and natural grandeur of the area.
Honor Court was constructed solely through private donations with local contractors providing, at no cost, much of the labor and materials. Expertise in splitting boulders was provided by faculty in the university's Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering and the design for Honor Court was the work of the renowned architectural firm Backen, Arrigoni and Ross.
Individuals and organizations that have contributed major donations to the University are recognized in the following categories in displays carved of Sierra White Granite throughout the Honor Court:
Philanthropist -- $5 million or more
Founder -- $1 million to $4,999,999
Patron -- $500,000 to $999,999
Gold Benefactor -- $250,000 to $499,000
Silver Benefactor - corporations and foundations, $100,000 to $249,999; individuals, families, and through estates and trusts, $50,000 to $249,000
*All donations are cumulative
Together with donors, the names of students, faculty, staff and community members who have contributed to the university's history of exemplary scholarship, teaching and outreach are engraved and duly acknowledged in the following award categories:
Classified Employee of the Year Award (first presented in 1986)
Distinguished Faculty Award (first presented in 1991)
Distinguished Nevadan Award (first presented in 1959)
Distinguished Service Award (first presented in 1996)
Honorary Degree (first presented in 1911)
Foundation Professor (first presented in 1983)
Outstanding Researcher of the Year Award (first presented in 1975)
President's Medal (first presented in 1984)
R. Herz Gold Medal (first presented in 1910)