OSI-Baltimore is deeply saddened by the passing of Clinton Bamberger, emeritus professor of the University of Maryland School of Law, OSI-Baltimore founding board member and emeritus trustee.
As the Baltimore Sun wrote in its obituary for Bamburger:
In recent years, Mr. Bamberger became the first board member named to the Open Society Institute-Baltimore, an organization that seeks to address issues of poverty, criminal justice and education.
“Clinton was a rigorous thinker who had high ethical standards and was fearless. He constantly reminded us that our job was to take risks,” said Diana Morris, the institute’s director. “When he thought there was a wrong done, he used the legal system to bring about justice.”
She recalled Mr. Bamberger had hundreds of professional connections — he had legal assignments and took sabbaticals across the world, and made friends along the way. He and his wife also opened their home to scores of visitors.
Bamberger had a distinguished law career. A Baltimore native, he attended Georgetown University Law Center and worked at the then-named Piper & Marbury law firm for 17 years, becoming a partner. Under President Lyndon Johnson, Bamberger became the first director of a federal program to provide funding for legal aid for poor people—the Legal Services Program of the Office of Economic Opportunity. He served as dean of the law school at Catholic University for five years and then was executive vice president of the national Legal Services Corporation, the successor to the OEO program. He was named professor of the year by the Society of American Law Teachers, was a Senior Fulbright Scholar in Nepal and has been a scholar or visiting professor in The Netherlands, Australia and South Africa.
“He was a wonderful man who personally mentored hundreds of people, set up clinical law programs from Maryland to Nepal, loved the underdog, and encouraged OSI-Baltimore to take risks,” Morris added.
His wife Katherine passed away in December. “They both led their lives in an exemplary way,” Morris said, “leading with their values and taking the road less traveled to defend and befriend people harmed by pernicious practices and policies, from apartheid to lead poisoning.”
Plans for a service will be set later.