A Tribute to Jeffrey O’Connell
UVA Law Faculty Affiliations
Jeffery O’Connell’s remarkable career as a lawyer and academic has spanned portions of seven decades. Jeff graduated from Dartmouth College in 1951 and Harvard Law School in 1954. He was a trial lawyer at the Boston firm of Hale & Dorr before teaching at the University of Iowa and University of Illinois law schools. Jeff is a leading authority on both insurance law and torts. Although this combination has been impressively symbiotic, it came about largely by accident. Like most new law professors, Jeff decided he should add a first-year course to his repertoire. He decided on torts. In his own words, Jeff “quickly became aware, through the writings of Fleming James, of what a disaster tort law was and how much reform was needed.” And he concluded that reform was needed most of all at the intersection of tort and insurance law.