In Memoriam: Lino Graglia (1930-1922)

University of Texas has announced that Professor Lino Gramglia, who served on the law faculty for over five decades, is no longer with us.

Lino G. Graglia has died. The Law School community was saddened. Professor Graglia served as a Law School faculty member for over 50 years.

Dean Ward Farnsworth said that Lino was an influential scholar across many fields, and a beloved mentor for many students. His colleagues loved him and respected his opinions. Many became close friends even though they disagreed with his ideas. These views caused a lot controversy but Lino was devoted to the school and served it with integrity and devotion.

Prof. Graglia is a Brooklyn native. He studied at Columbia University School of Law as well as City College of New York. He joined the Department of Justice in the Eisenhower Administration. There he remained until 1957 when he went into private practice. His boss at the Department of Justice was Warren Burger. Burger would later become Chief Justice of The United States Supreme Court. In 1966, Prof. Graglia became a faculty member of the School of Law. Professor Graglia taught Antitrust Law and Constitutional Law and published widely on these subjects.

Professor Graglia advocated for an originalist interpretation of the Constitution. Lino has been able to create and teach against all the grain of modern law why the activist tendencies of federal court judges are illegally, logically, or historically wrong,” Judge Edith Jones of United States Court of Appeals Fifth Circuit wrote in a tribute to Prof. Graglia. He left a legacy of thousands of students who were persuaded by him to share similar views, or even to grasp the differences between legal reasoning authentically and judicial fiat.

The Hon. Don Willett, Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals made a similar statement. On the occasion Prof. Graglia’s retirement, he said that Lino “has played an outsized part in shaping, sharpening and the minds of generations” Judge Willett called Prof. Graglia “intense, but not pretense”.

Kay, his wife of 68-years, three of their children and seven grandchildren are still with him. Donna Rosenwasser, his daughter (’86), said that the law school provided him with “the greatest source of happiness and fulfillment throughout his entire life.”

Lino was a strong leader, highly respected within the Texas legal profession. This is a devastating loss to Austin conservative students. Let his memory be a blessing.