Maryland Carey Law mourns the loss of Judge Lawrence Rodowsky

The Maryland Carey Law community mourns the loss of the Honorable Lawrence F. Rodowsky ’56, who passed away on Oct. 1. Judge Rodowsky served 20 years on the Court of Appeals of Maryland following his appointment by Maryland Gov. Harry Hughes in 1980. Judge Rodowsky was known as the court’s expert on commercial law and is remembered for his integrity and common sense. 

When Court of Appeals Chief Judge Matthew J. Fader announced Rodowsky’s death to the high court, he called Judge Rodowsky, “a giant in the legal history of this state and in the formation of the jurisprudence of this state.” 

Judge Rodowsky was a long-term member of the Court of Appeals Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure, chair of the board of directors of the Judicial Institute of Maryland, and chair of the Maryland State Bar Association’s Section on Litigation. He was also the first chair of the Select Committee on Gender Equality, which helped call attention to and address gender bias in Maryland courts.  

His honors include the ABA Judicial Division’s Judicial Education Award, the Maryland Bar Foundation’s Advancement of Professional Competence Award, and being inducted as a fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers.  

Prior to his appointment to the bench, Judge Rodowsky was a partner with Frank, Bernstein, Conaway & Goldman, assistant attorney general in the Maryland attorney general’s office, and a law clerk to the Honorable W. Calvin Chesnut of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. 

Born in Baltimore, Judge Rodowsky earned his law degree in 1956, graduating first in his class. As a student, he was co-editor of the Maryland Law Review.  

Throughout his career, Judge Rodowsky stayed deeply connected to his alma mater. He served as an adjunct professor for more than a dozen years, specializing in Maryland Procedure, a subject Professor Emeritus William Reynolds wrote in a tribute, “about which it is safe to say he has no equal.” He was also dedicated to mentoring students and hired many as clerks. 

In 2007, Judge Rodowsky was the recipient of Maryland Carey Law’s Benjamin L. Cardin Public Service Award. 

He is survived by six children, 15 grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. His wife of 66 years, Colby F. Rodowsky, died in 2020. 

Share this article