Symposium Honors and Roasts Professor Monaghan

Winter 2010

Professor Henry Paul Monaghan celebrated his 75th birthday this year with a special symposium organized for him by his Law School colleagues. The name of the event, “The View from the Curmudgeon’s Lair,” referred to Monaghan’s office in Jerome Greene Hall—which is affectionately referred to as “the curmudgeon’s lair.”

The symposium began with lunch and two panel discussions at the Law School. Then, an array of panelists, professors, academics, and guests proceeded to Terrace in the Sky restaurant for dinner and a roast of Monaghan, the Harlan Fiske Stone Professor of Constitutional Law.

The first panel of the day’s event was titled “Current Problems in the Federal
Courts: Habeas, Extraterritoriality, and ‘Litigation Governance.’” Professors
Sarah H. Cleveland
and John C. Coffee Jr. spoke on the panel, along with academics from Harvard and Yale law schools. Professor Gillian E. Metzger moderated a second panel discussion about constitutional common law.

“[Henry] has this curmudgeonly façade that he puts on, but it’s very clear that he is a very devoted teacher and mentor,” said Metzger. “His students appreciate that he is really committed to teaching them law and making them think.” Several of Monaghan’s former students traveled to New York to attend the event.

At dinner, speeches took a more light-hearted turn. Guests who spoke included Sandra Lynch, who serves as the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals chief judge, as well as Professor Emeritus Marvin A. Chirelstein, whose speech took the form of a eulogy for Monaghan. “Marvin had the place in stitches,” recalled Metzger, adding that the good-natured Monaghan was among those who most enjoyed the evening.