Professor Larry Gibson named Morton & Sophia Macht Professor of Law

November 21, 2019

Maryland Carey Law celebrated the investiture of Professor Larry S. Gibson as the Morton & Sophia Macht Professor of Law at a ceremony in Westminster Hall on Nov. 14.

Attendees packed the historic hall to honor the legendary professor, lawyer, scholar, historian, and political strategist who has taught at the law school since 1974. Present were many of Gibson’s family, friends, colleagues, and mentees, including Baltimore’s first African American mayor Kurt Schmoke, whose 1987 campaign Gibson managed.

Maryland Carey Law Dean Donald B. Tobin welcomed the crowd, taking a moment to acknowledge the passing of Gibson’s lifelong friend and mentee Congressman Elijah E. Cummings. He went on to praise Gibson, saying, “For all of Larry’s work as a civil rights leader, political strategist, historian, scholar, and teacher, we revere him. For his devotion to the people around him, we cherish him.”

Tobin also shared quotations from students in Gibson’s courses, such as Evidence, Civil Procedure, Race and the Law, and Election Law. Drawn directly from student evaluations, the glowing comments included, “Professor Gibson is the best,” and “Amazing professor. I will now take every course he teaches.”

Tobin’s remarks were followed by words from longtime family friend Amy Macht, president of the foundation funding Gibson’s professorship; and former students, Rebecca Tabb Simmons ’87, general counsel for the Baltimore City Counsel; and Enoch Bevel ’19, chief of staff for Maryland senator, Arthur Ellis. Finally, Gibson’s son Dr. Steven L. Gibson, chief of cardiac anesthesia at Walter Reed Medical Center, reflected on his father’s legacy.

Concluding the program were remarks from Gibson himself who took the opportunity to announce his latest project celebrating the 150th anniversary of the 15th amendment, which will include a major parade in downtown Baltimore.

Larry Gibson grew up in Baltimore and attended Howard University. He earned his law degree from Columbia University in 1967 and was the first African American law professor at the University of Virginia. Gibson is a renowned scholar and historian and was the principal advocate for the law passed by the Maryland General Assembly renaming the BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport. He is currently working on a follow-up to his 2012 groundbreaking book Young Thurgood: The Making of a Supreme Court Justice. Gibson is of counsel at Shapiro Sher Guinot & Sandler.

Earlier this year, Gibson was inducted into The Baltimore Sun Business & Civic Hall of Fame. In October, he joined former presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton as a speaker at the funeral of Congressman Elijah E. Cummings.


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