In Memoriam

Professor John Wesley Reed

Professor John Wesley Reed, age 99, died March 6. A native of Independence, Mo., he began his academic career at William Jewell College in Liberty, Mo., continued at Cornell Law School in Ithaca, N.Y., and completed his studies at Columbia Law School in N.Y.

His professional career began in Kansas City, MO., as a practicing attorney, then he joined the faculty of the University of Oklahoma Law School.

In 1949, Reed joined the University of Michigan Law School faculty, retiring after a half century. Named as the Thomas M. Cooley Professor of Law, his tenure was interspersed with visiting professorships at Yale, Harvard, Princeton, Chicago, New York University, and San Diego. He also served as dean of the University of Colorado and Wayne State University law schools and as director of the Institute for Continuing Legal Education at the University of Michigan. He was honored with the Legacy Award from the State Bar of Michigan.

In 1981, Reed became the administrative secretary of the International Society of Barristers.

Survived by three daughters, eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren, Reed was preceded in death by his wife, Dot, and sons, Mark and Randy.

A memorial service was held March 17 at First Baptist Church in Ann Arbor. Memorial contributions may be made to: The Residence of Arbor Hospice, 2366 Oak Valley Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48103; Ministers and Missionaries Retirement Fund of the American Baptist Churches, 475 Riverside Drive, Suite 1700, New York, NY 10115-0049; and The Innocence Project, 40 Worth Street, Suite 701, New York, NY 10013.

Professor Whitmore Gray

Professor Whitmore Gray died March 4 at the age of 85.

A native of Monroe, Gray received his AB from Principia College and his JD from the University of Michigan Law School, where he served as editor-in-chief of the Michigan Law Review. Following graduation, he studied at the University of Paris and practiced law in New York City. He was awarded an LLD degree by Adrian College in 1982.

Gray joined the faculty of Michigan Law as an assistant professor in 1960; he was promoted to associate professor in 1963, and professor in 1966, where he remained until retiring in 1993.

Gray practiced law at a number of firms including the New York firms of Casey, Lane & Mittendorf; Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton; and LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene & MacRae.

In 1993, he was awarded emeritus status from Michigan Law and continued teaching for 20 years while also teaching at Fordham Law School, as the George Bacon-Victor Kilkenny Chair for a Distinguished Visiting Professor in New York City.

He served as a guest lecturer and visiting professor around the world, including at the universities of Muenster and Tubingen in Germany; the universities of Tokyo and Kyoto in Japan; and universities in Mexico, China, France, Hong Kong, and the United States, including Stanford and Princeton universities. He was a founding faculty member of the School of Transnational Law at Peking University in Shenzhen, China, from 2008 to 2014.

Gray compiled extensive sets of teaching materials on contract law, alternate dispute resolution, and comparative law. His work in comparative law helped to shape this country’s understanding of law in Russia, Japan, China, Vietnam, and Cambodia.

Gray was a member of the American Bar Association for more than 60 years, the American Foreign Law Association, the Association of Asian Studies, and the U-M centers for Japanese and Chinese Studies.

Gray was preceded in death by his brother, sister, and his daughter, Sara.

A memorial service was held March 16 at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Ann Arbor. Memorial donations may be made to: St. Andrew's Episcopal Church; The Breakfast at St. Andrew’s; and the Professor Emeritus Whitmore Gray Scholarship Fund at Michigan Law School.


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