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Noted Legal Scholar Victor Rosenblum Dies at Age 80

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March 15, 2006

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Victor Rosenblum, 80, of Evanston, the Nathaniel L. Nathanson Professor Emeritus at the Northwestern University School of Law, died Monday (March 13) at Evanston Hospital after a long illness.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday (March 16) at Beth Emet Synagogue, 1224 Dempster St., Evanston.

A devoted teacher and noted expert in administrative law, Mr. Rosenblum taught almost without interruption from the beginning of his graduate studies at the University of California. He had just completed an undergraduate seminar in his home on the previous Monday. Mr. Rosenblum was active in many civil rights and civil liberties causes during his career, but many will remember him for his role in the ‘pro-life” movement. He argued the anti-abortion side of the Hyde Amendment in 1981 before the U.S. Supreme Court in the case that upheld Congress’ refusal to provide tax money for abortions. He served the Americans United for Life as vice chairman from 1970-1989 and chairman from 1989 to 1995.

Mr. Rosenblum joined Northwestern in 1958, serving as associate professor of political science from 1958 to 1963; visiting associate professor of law from 1962-1963; and professor of law and political science from 1963 to 1968.

He served as president of Reed College, Portland, Ore., from 1968 to 1970, then returned to Northwestern as professor of law and political science from 1970 to 1988. He was director of the Law School’s Graduate Studies Program from 1979-1992.

Mr. Rosenblum was named the Nathaniel L. Nathanson Professor at the School of Law in 1988 and held that endowed professorship until becoming emeritus in 2002.

He was chosen by students as the Outstanding Professor of a Small Class for academic year 2004. For its class gift to the Law School, the class of 2004 chose to honor and celebrate the career and achievements of Professor Rosenblum with a portrait that now hangs in Strawn Hall.

During his academic career, Mr. Rosenblum also held visiting professorships at Peoples' University in China, the University of Louvain in Belgium, and at numerous U.S. law schools

He also served the U.S. House of Representatives in 1957-58 as associate counsel, Subcommittee on Executive and Legislative Reorganization, Committee on Government Operations.

Mr. Rosenblum served as president of the Association of American Law Schools in 1987 and was on the board of directors at the American Judicature Society, Law School Admissions Council and Consortium of Social Science Associations. He held several positions at the American Bar Association.

He was a member of the executive committee of the Anti-Defamation League, Chicago-Midwest Region, from 1971 to 1995 and was its chairman in 1975-1976.

Mr. Rosenblum was born in New York City June 2, 1925.

He received three degrees, an A.B. in 1945 from Columbia University, LL.B. in 1948 from Columbia and Ph.D. in 1953 from the University of California at Berkeley where he was assistant professor of political science and supervisor of American history and institutions requirements from 1953-1956.

He was awarded honorary degrees from Hebrew Union College (1970), Siena Heights College (1982) and Wabash College (1998).

Mr. Rosenblum is survived by his wife, Louise; three daughters, Susan Rabens, Ellen Rosenblum, and Laura Peterson; five sons, Keith, Jonathan, Peter, Warren and Joshua; and 17 grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, the family has asked for contributions to be made in Victor’s memory to: Shore Services for Developmental Disabilities, 4232 Dempster St., Skokie, Ill. 60076.

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