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IN MEMORIAM: JESSE BARRETT GROVE III
PHILIP L BRUNER
Jesse B Grove III, known throughout his life as “Barry”, passed away on 10 August 2019. He was a member of the International Construction Law Review’s Editorial Advisory Board for over three decades.
Born on 10 February 1942, Barry grew up in Virginia, where he graduated from Virginia’s Washington & Lee College and the University of Virginia Law School. Following graduation from law school, Barry and his young family moved to San Francisco, where Barry joined the law firm of Thelen, Marrin, Johnson & Bridges, one of the earliest US law firms to focus on construction law. Among its clients the firm represented a number of large US contractors including Bechtel Corporation, Fluor Corporation. When the Thelen firm acquired Reid & Priest, Barry and his family moved to New York where Barry became the head of the combined firm’s construction practice.
Over the course of his career Barry became recognised and respected as one of the world’s most distinguished construction lawyers. Among his many professional endeavours, he represented contractors in the building of the Channel Tunnel and its rail lines from London to Paris, and the Alaska Pipeline. He was retained by the Hong Kong government to advise on international construction risks. He was a founding Fellow and 2003 President of The American College of Construction Lawyers.
Following his retirement from the practice of law, Barry joined me as an arbitrator, mediator and member of the JAMS Global Engineering and Construction Panel of dispute resolution neutrals, where he was a fine colleague and was repeatedly selected to serve on international and domestic arbitration panels hearing significant disputes. In 2012, he chose to move back to his ancestral home in Scottsville, Virginia, where he ran for and was elected mayor to three consecutive terms. He took great pride in his many accomplishments in the law, in dispute resolution and as mayor.
Upon his death, Barry’s contributions to the field of construction law were widely recognised in numerous tributes from around the world. Lawyers who had known him for decades remembered his quick wit, sharp intellect and personal kindnesses as a friend and as an adversary, mentor and advisor. Many referred to him as a “star”, the “best of the best” and one of the world’s finest. His Honour Humphrey LLoyd, QC, retired judge of England’s Technology and Construction Court and former Editor-in-Chief of this journal, offered his own tribute: “I had the good fortune to have known Barry for decades and to have benefitted greatly from his thoughtful opinions and wise experience, as well as his geniality, generosity and ready accessibility. In the international sphere he made seminal contributions to thinking on many subjects … [He] was a giant”.
To our distinguished colleague and long-time friend, may you rest in peace.
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