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Diana Vincent-Daviss

Diana Vincent-Daviss came to KEHS in 1954. She was nominated as a Distinguished Old Edwardian by her friend and KEHS contemporary, Kay Williams.

From the very start of her time with us, it was clear that Diana was very bright and would go far. A good-humoured rebel, she often found herself in trouble – a trait that is remembered with fondness by her classmates. She left KEHS in 1961 to study at the University of Cambridge, where she obtained her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees.  

In the late 1960s, Diana started a new life across the Atlantic. After receiving her M.L.S. from Columbia University, she was appointed as Librarian at the New York University Law Library. It was here that her eminent career truly took off. After a series of in-house promotions, she became a Professor of Law as well as the Law Librarian. Under her leadership, their library doubled in size. In 1991, she was snapped up by Yale Law School and became their first female director. She was particularly well-known for her work on the preservation of library materials and her consultancy with the United States Agency for International Development.

Diana was also deeply involved in the promotion of International Human Rights. In 1992, she was named deputy director of the Orville H. Schell Jr. Center for International Human Rights at Yale. The Center assists lawyers and organisations concerned about Human Rights, acting as a ‘clearing house’ for information. Diana also published a three volume guide on Human Rights Law.

Sadly, Diana’s life was cut short when she suffered a cerebral aneurysm in September 1993.

In her honour, a consortium of law librarians, university-based human rights centres and non-governmental human rights organisations set about the collaborative venture, Project Diana. Together they have created a comprehensive and authoritative database of electronic materials essential to Human Rights research.

Who knows what Diana might have achieved had she not suffered this tragedy. She is survived by her daughter and two sisters.