Bar News - December 14, 2007
Bar Foundation News: Hon. John Maher Is 2008 Honorary Fellow
By: Susan Noon
Hon. John R. Maher
The Hon. John R. Maher has been selected as the 2008 Honorary Fellow by the New Hampshire Bar Foundation. The award recognizes long-term, active participation in advancing the mission of the Bar Foundation. “The Bar Foundation recognizes Judge Maher for his generosity of spirit and dedication to improving the lives of others,” said Russell F. Hilliard, chair of the Bar Foundation. “John’s leadership in the legal community and beyond is an inspiration to us all.”
Judge Maher, recently retired Administrative Justice of Probate, will be the guest of honor at the New Hampshire Bar Foundation’s Fellows and Donors Reception on Jan. 24, 2008, at the Bedford Village Inn in Bedford, NH.
In 1998, John and Skye Maher created a lasting legacy at the Bar Foundation in the name of friend and mentor Supreme Court Associate Justice William F. Batchelder. The Maher’s $100,000 pledge to establish the Hon. William F. Batchelder Fund remains one of the largest donations to the Bar Foundation’s endowment. The earned revenue from this fund is disbursed annually through the Justice Grants Program to support legal aid for low-income and disadvantaged residents. “Early in the Bar Foundation’s efforts to grow the endowment, Judge Maher signed on as a strong supporter of our goal to ensure meaningful access to the justice system for all New Hampshire residents,” said David Snyder, executive director. “We greatly appreciate his ongoing philanthropic leadership.”
Judge Maher’s concern for the well-being of his colleagues prompted him to establish the NH Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers program. The program offers confidential assistance to lawyers and judges struggling with alcohol or drug addiction. A grant from the Bar Foundation, and funds donated through Judge Maher’s retirement party, made it possible for NHLAP to hire an executive director this year. Funds raised through Maher’s retirement party also supported the Campaign for Legal Services and Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA NH).
Last year, Judge Maher retired from a 23-year career as a probate judge and now has an independent practice in mediation and arbitration for real estate and elder law issues. He envisions a long-term career in his new practice. Judge Maher also sits as a Senior Judge in the Family Division in Merrimack and Rockingham counties, as needed. He says he enjoys “coming in for a day and keeping his hand in things.” In his retirement, Judge Maher says “I’m doing the things I always wanted to do,” – and that requires a lot of traveling, both in and out of the country. He and Skye are very excited about an upcoming trip to “extremely remote” islands in the South Pacific to scuba dive, a sport the couple has loved for the past 30 years. Maher recently returned from Alabama where he went to golf on the famous Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail. In December, he and Skye will travel to San Diego. It’s no surprise that in retirement, he is every bit as active as he was before, perhaps even more so.
John R. Maher joins a distinguished list of Bar Foundation Honorary Fellows, including Anthony A. McManus 2007, Charles A. DeGrandpre 2006, Kevin Devine 2005, John Funk 2004, Hon. John T. Broderick, Jr. 2003, Jack B. Middleton 2002, David L. Nixon 2001, Joseph P. Millimet 2000, Frederic K. Upton 1999, Ernest L. Bell 1998, John R. McLane (D) 1997, Hon. William F. Batchelder 1997, Joseph M. Kerrigan 1996, Hon. William A. Grimes (D) 1996, N. Michael Plaut (D) 1995, Patti Blanchette 1995, Hon. David A. Brock 1994, Anne C. Zachos 1994, Kimon S. Zachos 1994, Richard F. Upton (D) 1993, Hon. Shane Devine (D) 1993, Arthur H. Nighswander 1992, Stanley M. Brown (D) 1992, Hon. Arthur E. Bean, Jr. 1991, Fred W. Hall, Jr. 1991, Hon. Louis C. Wyman (D) 1991, Hon. William F. Cann (D) 1991, Martin F. Loughlin (D) 1990, Hon. Hugh H. Bownes (D) 1989, John J. Sheehan (D) 1989, Hon. John W. King (D) 1988. (D-deceased)
The New Hampshire Bar Foundation is the only New Hampshire foundation dedicated to supporting civil legal aid for the poor and education about the law and the courts.