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Washington and Lee Honors Richard L. Duchossois with Washington Award

Richard L. Duchossois, a member of Washington and Lee University’s Class of 1944, received the University’s prestigious Washington Award on Feb. 6, at a banquet held during the winter meeting of the W&L Board of Trustees, in Lexington, Virginia.

Duchossois, the chairman of the Duchossois Group, Elmhurst, Illinois, is only the fifth recipient of the award, which the W&L trustees established in 2001 to recognize extraordinary acts of philanthropy in support of W&L and other institutions, and distinguished leadership and service to the nation.

“To know Dick Duchossois is to know a person devoted to noble causes, to the service of others and to family,” said W&L President Kenneth P. Ruscio. “His humility, combined with his sense of decency and good humor, endear him to all. We are forever indebted to him for his commitment and support.”

At his alma mater, Duchossois has supported the Duchossois Athletic Complex, which comprises Wilson Field for football, lacrosse and track; the fields for soccer, field hockey and baseball; the cross country course; and the outdoor tennis courts and the indoor Duchossois Tennis Center. He also has provided a named scholarship fund.

He serves as the chairman and chief executive officer of Arlington International Racecourse, the horse-racing facility in Arlington Heights, Illinois, and on the board of Churchill Downs Inc., which oversees the racetrack in Louisville, Kentucky.

His many philanthropic interests include the Beverly T. Duchossois Cancer Laboratory at the University of Chicago Hospital, named for his late first wife, and the National WWII Museum in New Orleans.

Duchossois served in World War II as a second lieutenant in the Army, fighting in the Battle of the Bulge and receiving a Purple Heart and two Bronze Stars.

In 2014, on the 70th anniversary of D-Day, Duchossois was inducted into the French Legion of Honor. His other honors include the American Jockey Club Medal, three Eclipse Awards and induction into the Chicago Sports Hall of Fame. Last year, he and his wife, Judi, received the Sword of Loyola award from Loyola University Chicago for their exceptional dedication to philanthropy and humanitarian service.

At the W&L ceremony on Feb. 6, Duchossois also received a tribute — and a W&L letter sweater — from two student-athletes, senior Austin Eisenhofer (captain of the football team) and senior Sonja Meighan (co-captain of the women’s tennis team).

Duchossois’ daughter Kimberly T. Duchossois is a trustee emeritus of W&L, and her son, Tyler R. Lenczuk, is a member of the Class of 2008.

Previous recipients of the Washington Award are Marguerite and Gerry Lenfest (Classes of 1953 and 1955 Law), former U.S. Senator John Warner (Class of 1949), Maryellie and Rupert Johnson (Class of 1962) and Roger H. Mudd (Class of 1950).