Description

Ipse Dixit

How the World Looks to a Federal Judge

William L. Dwyer

  • Published: 2007
  • Subject Listing: Western History, Biography, Law, Political Science
  • Bibliographic information: 176 pp., notes, bibliog., index, 6 x 9 in.
  • Territorial rights: World
  • Published with: University of Washington School of Law
  • Contents

During William L. Dwyer's fifteen-year tenure as a U.S. District Court judge, he presided over many complex and groundbreaking cases. In one of his most controversial rulings, he engaged environmentalists and the timber industry in a heavily publicized and emotionally fraught battle over the territory of the northern spotted owl, ultimately approving the bird for “threatened species” status and forcing the Forest Service to substantially reduce logging in owl-habitat areas.

Before his appointment to the district court in 1987, Dwyer had spent more than thirty years as a trial lawyer, never shying away from the most difficult cases. He argued the libel suit of accused Communist sympathizer John Goldmark; he represented newspaper employees in the contested proposal for a joint-operating agreement between the Seattle Times and Seattle Post-Intelligencer; and he brought a suit against baseball's American League that resulted in the return of the Mariners to Seattle.

The fifteen speeches in this volume cover a span from 1978 to 2002 and reveal the breadth and scope of Dwyer's legal wisdom. He championed libraries as keepers of our language, ideas, and history; he taught students the history and philosophy of litigation; and he challenged members of the legal profession to do more pro bono work. His respect for the rule of law and his belief in the necessary contribution of lawyers to society come through clearly in his own words, whether he was speaking to the American Library Association, the Federal Bar Association, or first-year law students. The volume includes several speeches that express Dwyer's hopes for the American legal system. “If we use our heads,” Dwyer avers, “we have the collective ability to survive and to let the rest of life survive with us.”

William L. Dwyer (1929-2002) served as U.S. District Court judge for the Western District of Washington from 1987 to 2002. He was a past president of the Seattle King County Bar Association, member of the Board of Governors of the Washington State Bar Association, and a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. His books include The Goldmark Case: An American Libel Trial and In the Hands of the People: The Trial Jury's Origins, Triumphs, Troubles, and Future in American Democracy. Meade Emory is emeritus professor of law, University of Washington School of Law. Stimson Bullitt, a Seattle lawyer, has been active in politics for many years and is the author of To Be a Politician.
Contents
Foreword by Meade Emory
Introduction by Stimson Bullitt
Preface by William Dwyer

Remarks at the Federal Bar Association / Banquet Honoring Judge George H. Boldt

New Dimensions / University of Washington Law School Judges and Librarians

The Declaration of the Rights of Man - 200 Years Later / Seattle-Nantes Sister City Association

Optimism for Lawyers / Annual Banquet, The Order of the Coif, University of Washington School of Law

The Practical Value of Ethics / The Federal Bar Association of the Western District of Washington

Finding the Center / Alumni Recognition Banquet, University of Washington School of Law

Remarks on Semi-Retiring / Federal Bary Association Banquet
Lincoln Then and Now / Lincoln Day Banquet, Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association

Centennial Expectations / School of Law Commencement, University of Washington

Stimson Bullitt / Seattle-King County First Citizen Award

Remembering Chuck Goldmark / Goldmark Award Luncheon, Legal Foundation of Washington

Emmett Watson Memorial

The Future of Litigation / First Annual Judicial Appreciation Dinner, Seattle-King County Bar Association; East King County Bar Association; South King County Bar Association

Rumpole Was Right: How the World Looks to a Federal Judge, and How the American Legal System Will Be Saved / The Monday Club

Pro Bono's Triple Win / Speech Presented for Judge Dwyer by Joanna Dwyer / Goldmark Award Luncheon, Legal Foundation of Seattle

Appendix: Published Material by and about William L. Dwyer compiled by Meade Emory

Acknowledgments
Reviews

"A short but instructive collection." - Seattle Post-Intelligencer

"Ipse Dixit: How the World Looks to a Federal Judge by William L. Dwyer should be required reading for every new lawyer...Inspiring, thoughtful and beautiful, this collection of essays is a gem." -Seattle Times