Closing Argument

Issue: Winter 2022

In Memoriam

Name Class
James Bean 1985
Kenneth W. Catmull 1967
James John Chachas 1969
Bruce E. Coke 1955
Steven Dean Crawley 1977
Ralph D. Crockett 1970
Jeanne E. Darricades 1992
Carl K. Davis 1973
Lindsey Phillip Dew 1982
Kent C. Dugmore, USAF (Ret.) 1964
Loyd J. Ericson 1960
Richard L. Evans, Jr. 1962
D. Clayton Fairbourn 1959
Delano S. Findlay, USA (Ret.) 1969
Melvin Keith Fowler 1976
Martin R. Gardner 1972
Kenneth R. Garrett 1967
William G. Gibbs 1955
Stewart Walter Gollan 2009
Robert H. Green 1956
Reed W. Hadfield 1957
Darwin C. Hansen 1970
Ronald R. Hare 1971
Melvyn T. Harmon 1965
Eric P. Hartman 1980
Sandra M. Hartman 2009
Barbara P. Heaney 1954
Nathan Val Herron 1997
Robert S. Howell 1972
Richard C. Hutchison 1981
Christine R. Jarvis 1987
Jeffrey J. Jensen 1975
Jay W. Mitton 1972
Richard M. Mollinet 1967
Roy B. Moore 1970
Kim D. Olsen 1982
Douglas H. Parker 1952
Stuart L. Poelman 1964
Jaren Kay Rencher 1997
Stephen C. Rich 1980
Richard K. Sager 1964
Edward L. Scott 1948
David John Shaw 1999
Steven H. Stewart 1971
James Calvin Taylor 1953
Jeff R. Thorne 1972
Fred E. Ulrich, Sr. 1955
Edward A. Watson 1966
David E. West 1957
M. Scott Woodland 1951
Richard Douglas Worsley 1966

In Remembrance - Edwin Brown Firmage
October 1, 1935 - October 3, 2020

Edwin Brown Firmage, beloved professor at the S.J. Quinney College of Law, died October 3, 2020.

Professor Firmage taught constitutional law.  A Hinckley Fellow at Brigham Young University, he graduated with high honors in political science and history. He received a master's degree in history from Brigham Young University. He was National Honors Scholar at the University of Chicago Law School and served on the editorial board of the Chicago Law Review.  He received the Professor of Law, Master of Laws, and Professor of Jurisprudence degrees from Chicago.

Professor Firmage served as a White House Fellow on the staff of Vice-President of the United States, the Honorable Hubert Horatio Humphrey, with responsibility for civil rights.  In that capacity, he worked with Roy Wilkins of the NAACP, the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., and Whitney Young and the Urban League. During this time he helped draft the Children’s Nutrition Act of 1966; and met weekly with the planning committee for the White House Conference on Civil Rights.  Later, served as United Nations Visiting Scholar, and attended sessions of the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York and the arms control negotiations in Geneva, Switzerland, in 1970-71.

He served as Fellow in Law and Humanities at the Harvard Law School in 1974-75.  He received the University of Utah Distinguished Teaching Award in 1977 and the Brigham Young University Alumni Distinguished Achievement Award in 1978.

In 1978, Professor Firmage was among the first to speak out against the MX missile basing within the Great Basin of the American West. He led a coalition of organizations that eventually defeated this basing scheme.

The University of Utah invited Professor Firmage to deliver the annual Reynolds Lecture, Ends and Means in Conflict, in October 1987.

In 1988, Professor Firmage was awarded the Charles Redd Prize by the Utah Academy of Science, Arts and Letters, for outstanding contributions in the Humanities and Social Sciences during the past five years.

Professor Firmage was the recipient of the 1989 Governor's Award in the Humanities, given by the Utah Endowment for the Humanities.

He delivered the McDougall lecture, Reconciliation, at the Cathedral of the Madeleine in Salt Lake City, Utah, on March 7, 1989.

With the late Francis Wormuth, he wrote To Chain the Dog of War: The War Power of Congress in History & Law, second edition published in 1989, revised in 2001, by University of Illinois Press.

Professor Firmage's book with Collin Mangrum, Zion in the Courts: A Legal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the first legal history of the Mormon experience in the nineteenth century, was awarded the 1989 first place prize of the Alpha Sigma Nu Book Awards for the best book of the year, given by the Honors Society of the National Association of Jesuit Colleges & Universities in the United States.  Zion in the Courts was revised in a paperback edition in 2001.

His book, Religion & Law: Biblical, Jewish and Islamic Perspectives, was written with J. Welch and B. Weiss, eds., (Eisenbraun's 1990).

Professor Firmage was named Samuel D. Thurman Professor of Law by the University of Utah in January 1990.

He was a participant in a Fulbright Seminar in the Soviet Union during the summer of 1990, traveling throughout the country, attending lectures and meetings with Soviet governmental leaders, scholars, and leaders of emerging political parties.

He worked with Vietnamese refugees in Vietnam, Thailand and Hong Kong in 1990 and 1991.

Professor Firmage was the 1991 recipient of the Rosenblatt Prize for Excellence, the highest academic award given by the University of Utah.

In 1991 he was also awarded the Turner-Fairbourn Award for significant contributions to peace and justice.

He delivered the Lane Lecture at Creighton University School of Law, Omaha Nebraska, 1992.

Professor Firmage was a Visiting Professor August-December, 1992, Bentham House, University College, University of London, teaching Constitutional Law.

In April of 1993, Professor Firmage gave lectures to the Justice and Peace Representatives of the International Congregation of Men and Women Religious in Rome.

Professor Firmage delivered the Kellogg Lectures in May of 1993, entitled The Human Being:  War, Peace and Faith, at the Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Edwin B.  Firmage, et al., are editors of The International Legal System, Fifth Edition, Foundation Press, New York, Fall, 2001.

Professor Firmage was the recipient of the “Lifetime Achievement” Gold Medaille d’Excellence Laureates in Geneva, Switzerland in August, 2001, in recognition of a life of public service and citizen diplomacy on behalf of the betterment of humanity and the advancement of peace and justice.

Professor Firmage attended  meetings of the Sub-Commission on Human Rights of the United Nations, in Geneva, Switzerland, during the month of August, 1999.  His speech at the Sub-Committee began debate on the topic AToward  the Creation of a Culture of Peace and Non-Violence Toward Children, 2000-2010."  Professor Firmage also attended the Subcommittee on Human Rights and delivered a speech, “Beginnings,” in August of 2001, dealing with indigenous peoples: Native American and Tibetan Human rights.

Professor Firmage began meetings with the government-in-exile of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, in the early 1980’s, in this decade several members of the parliament and the Cabinet of his Holiness met with Professor Firmage and the First Chief Justice Commissioner for the Tibetan Supreme Court. During this time, Professor Firmage was invited to a series of meetings, extended over several years, in the 1990’s and continued into 2000, 2003.  Beginning in the 1990’s Professor Firmage worked personally with the Dalai Lama.

He will be missed by many former students and colleagues.