Rombach Institute on Crime, Delinquency and Corrections

About the Institute

The Rombach Institute for Crime, Delinquency and Corrections is a privately endowed institute that supports students who specialize in criminal justice and invites high profile speakers to campus to address problems of crime like racial disparities in enforcement and sentencing. It is our goal to add a research component to the institute as well so that it can be a state resource on criminal justice policy.

The Institute was originally founded in 1997 through the generous support of the late Lionel E. Rombach. The mission of this Institute has always been to advance the knowledge, pursuit and evaluation of significant public policy issues as they relate to the field of criminal justice. 


The Institute has, and continues, to provide student financial assistance; supports public policy research through reports, conferences and publications; assists State criminal justice officials with evaluation, analysis and training; and presents student and faculty awards and fellowships.

The Institute works to:

  • Organize significant experts across the University to work in coordination with the Institute
  • Reach out to relevant community and criminal justice organizations for involvement with, and sponsorship of, Institute activities.
  • Sponsor and support activities of clubs for university students.
  • Write, organize and coordinate statements on cutting edge public policy issues pertaining to the field of criminal justice and its’ operations to be disseminated to local and national news outlets as well as academic journals and organizations.
  • Organize semi-annual conferences, lectures or meetings for the dissemination of information by local or national leaders in criminal justice to local and national constituencies, student groups and community organizations.
  • Assist in the development and awarding of scholarships to graduate and undergraduate students as the money becomes available from the Rombach funds.


Lionel England (“Lee”) Rombach, died at the age of 93. An unassuming man whose life was one of service, learning and simplicity, Lee was an avid bicyclist, an amateur artist, a deacon in the Roman Catholic Church, a devoted supporter of the University of Arizona, and a 60-year resident of the “Poet’s Corner” neighborhood.

Lee earned three UA degrees over the course of four decades. In 1943 he began a life of service with the Red Cross. As a social worker, juvenile and adult probation officer, and Chief of the Pima County Adult Probation Department Lee continued to pursue additional knowledge  in order to come to a better understanding of his role in the life of his organization and the people he served in those positions.
Modest compensation is the norm in social service careers and those who engage in them leave their mark on the world through their daily work. For Lee Rombach, this was not enough. He lived a life of remarkable austerity, spending little and giving his savings to the cause he loved best: education. Over the years, he made substantial gifts to the University. He supported the Rombach Scholars, students studying for master’s degrees in public administration. He endowed a student art gallery; scholarships for undergraduate students of interfaith/interdisciplinary studies; and, through a bequest, The Rombach Institute on Crime, Delinquency and Corrections. To date, nearly 200 students have received financial aid thanks to Lee’s generosity. To recognize his extraordinary contributions and example, the University awarded him an honorary doctorate in 2000.

Lee would be very happy today to see his legacy of service and knowledge dissemination continue through the Rombach Institute.