On Saturday April 18, Joel Fedder lost his long battle with pancreatic cancer. Joel was an amazing man who spent his later years promoting global environmental protection efforts. I met him several years ago after he had visited the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) on a Sierra Club trip led by my then-neighbor Melinda Pierce. Because I use ANWR as a case study in my Environmental Law class, I asked Joel to come to class to show the slides of his trip and to discuss his impressions of ANWR. I soon discovered that Joel had immersed himself in climate science and had become a passionate advocate for measures to control greenhouse gas emissions. Joel and his wife Ellen joined Maryland’s Environmental Law Program on our 2010 environmental field trip to China. I have so many fond memories of him from that trip, including him scaling the Great Wall with us the day after a blizzard had covered it with ice.
Joel became a significant benefactor for our Environmental Law Program. He provided us with funding to host an annual environmental lecture as well as the 10th Colloquium of the IUCN Academy of Environmental Law in July 2012. Following the tremendous success of that Colloquium, Joel created the Fedder Scholars Fund that creates an endowment to fund students to present papers each year at the Academy’s colloquia. Just last week four new Fedder Scholars were selected to present their papers at the Academy’s colloquium in Jakarta, Indonesia next September.
Dean Tobin, Heather Culp, Trishana Bowden and I attended Joel’s funeral yesterday. It was a wonderful celebration of his life where his children, Amy and Michael, his sister Sue and one of his grandchildren gave moving recollections of Joel. He will be greatly missed, but his passion for the environment will live on in the students who have been and will become Fedder Scholars.
Posted today on my parallel blog at: www.globalenvironmentallaw.com we have student blog posts from Josh Dhyani and Emily Gallin. Josh is a third year law student who will serve as a law clerk for Maryland Court of Appeals Judge Lynn Battaglia following his graduation next month. Josh’s blog post explores the implications of climate change for the insurance industry. Josh was selected to be a Fedder Scholar. Due to his clerkship, he will not be able to present his paper in person at the 13th Colloquium of the IUCN Academy of Environmental Law in Jakarta, Indonesia, in September. However, his paper will be submitted for consideration for inclusion in the conference proceedings volume. Emily Gallin is a first year law student whose blog post discusses efforts to combat deforestation in Indonesia. Their blog posts can be accessed by going to my parallel blog at http://www.globalenvironmentallaw.com and clicking on "Students" at the top of the blog page.