Judge Theodore G. Garfield
15BA, 17LLB

Service 1973

Theodore G. Garfield, was cited by the university for service to his profession, to the state of Iowa, and to his alma mater through more than five decades as a distinguished jurist.

Born in Humboldt, Iowa, November 1894, Judge Garfield received BA and LLB degrees from the University of Iowa in 1915 and 1917. While a law student at Iowa, Judge Garfield was initiated into Phi Beta Kappa and the Order of the Coif.

Admitted to the bar in 1916, Judge Garfield first practiced law in Ames and became judge on the 11th Judicial District Court of Iowa in 1927. He served this post until 1940, when he was elected a justice of the Iowa Supreme Court.

During his 28-year tenure as a Supreme Court Justice, Judge Garfield wrote more opinions than any other justice in the high court's history.

Having served as chief justice in rotation for four years and continuously since 1961 through his retirement in 1969, Judge Garfield's capacity for long hours and singular dedication to the law have become legend to his peers. Despite this busy schedule, Judge Garfield always found time for additional public service. He participated as a member of the Freedoms Foundation Awards Jury in 1958 and was chairman of the Conference of Chief Justices of the United States from 1964 to 1965. He was adjunct professor of law at Drake University in 1970.

His service to the university included the presidency of the then newly-organized University of Iowa Alumni Association from 1948 through 1951, and he still serves as chairman of the board of trustees of the Law School Foundation, a post he has held since 1952.