Paul G. Mahoney

An Ideal Colleague

Virginia Law Review


At the end of the 2009-10 academic year, Professor Lillian BeVier retired after forty years in law teaching, of which thirty-seven were at the University of Virginia School of Law. It makes me nervous to contemplate the Law School faculty without Lillian because there is no one who better embodies what is most admirable about the culture of this wonderful institution: the combination of intellectual toughness with personal warmth and civility; the deep dedication to preparing our students for success in their careers and lives; a belief in research and teaching as a collective mission; the insistence on putting institutional interests before personal preferences. Simply put, Lillian was an ideal colleague. She is also a remarkable person. The story of Lillian's professional life is one of avoiding the familiar and comfortable at every turn in favor of the challenging and unconventional. Lillian was at the leading edge of the first generation of women to attend law school in more than minimal numbers. After graduating from Smith College, she attended Stanford Law School as one of five women in her class. Lillian was an outstanding student there, serving on the managing board of the law review and being elected to the Order of the Coif.


Paul G. Mahoney, An Ideal Colleague, 96 Virginia Law Review 939-942 (2010).

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