George P. Smith II

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George P. Smith II
Born(1939-09-01)September 1, 1939
  • B.S. Indiana University
  • J.D. Indiana University School of Law
OccupationEmeritus Professor of Law
EmployerCatholic University of America

George Patrick Smith II is an American academic. Until 2016 he was a professor of law at the Columbus School of Law of The Catholic University of America, of which he is now an emeritus professor.[1][2]

Education and career[edit]

Smith was born on September 1, 1939, in Wabash, Indiana,[3] where his father and uncle were both attorneys.[4]

He attended the St. Bernard School in Wabash, and graduated from Wabash High School in 1957. He took a B.S. degree in business, economics and public policy from Indiana University Bloomington in 1961[5] and a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree in 1964; he was a member of the Indiana Law Review.[6]

Indiana University conferred its Silver Medallion upon Smith in 1985 as a Distinguished Service Alumnus,[7] and in 1998 an LL. D. degree, honoris causa, was conferred upon him.[8] In 1998, a Distinguished Professorship-Chair was established in Smith’s honor at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law in Bloomington.[9] The School of Law, again, in 2007, honored Smith by inducting him into the Indiana Academy of Law Fellows –this, in recognition of his professional contributions to the legal profession.[10]


Judge Richard A. Posner, a member of the United States Court of Appeals for The Seventh Circuit and Lecturer in Law at the University of Chicago Law School, acknowledged Smith as "one of the world’s leading experts on the legal and ethical issues raised by modern medicine" and observed that "he writes with insight and authority, and offers a perspective that will influence policy debates".[11] Dr. Edmund D. Pellegrino, John Carroll Professor Emeritus of Medicine and Medical Ethics, Georgetown University and former Chairman of the President’s Council on Bioethics, recognized Smith as "an internationally acclaimed scholar and pioneer in cultivating the interdisciplinary study of questions in which law, medical ethics and bioethics intersect."[12] In inaugurating the George P. Smith, II, Distinguished Professorship-Chair of Law at Indiana University in January, 2000, Justice Michael D. Kirby of the High Court of Australia, paid tribute to Smith's "awesome" level of transnational scholarship in Bioethics and his "indefatigable spirit and sense of total commitment as a questioning, inquisitive mind" and proceeded to herald Smith as a "prescient prophet of the New Biology."[8] Later in 2009, Justice Kirby hailed Smith's "commitment to universalism" and "his voracious appetite for wisdom in the exploration of legal and bioethical question... beyond the United States."[13]

On the twenty-fifth anniversary of his career in legal education in 1989, United States Congressman John T. Myers paid tribute to Smith's years of distinguished service to the legal profession.[14] As well, the editors of the Journal of Contemporary Health Law and Policy published his bibliography of scholarship in Law, Science and Medicine.[15] Smith was the founding editor-in-chief of this journal.

In 1988, at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, Smith was recognized for his professional contributions to Law and Medical Science by induction to the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem.[16] Similar recognition was given to Smith 1974 by his election to membership in The Cosmos Club in Washington, D.C.[17] Smith is also a life member of the prestigious American Law Institute.[18]


  1. ^ 2010–2011,The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law. Announcements at p. 26
  2. ^ The Association of American Law Schools Directory of Law Teachers (2009-101) at p. 1292.
  3. ^ Yearbook of the Society of Indiana Pioneers (2008—2009) at p. 152.
  4. ^ 1976 Wabash County Bicentennial 314—15 (Linda Robertson ed., 1976).
  5. ^ 68 ARBUTUS 194 (1961), Indiana University Yearbook.
  6. ^ 71 ARBUTUS 271 (1964), Indiana University Yearbook.
  7. ^ Congressman Frank McCloskey Tribute to Professor Smith, 131 CONGRESSIONAL RECORD 17950 (Permanent Edition, June 27, 1985).
  8. ^ a b Indiana University 169th Commencement Program, May 9, 1998, at p. 12. See also CONTACT, Catholic University Law School Alumni Magazine, at p. 25, Spring/Summer 1998.
  9. ^ See Michael D. Kirby, Inaugural Lecture, “The New Biology and International Sharing Lessons from The Life and Works of George P. Smith, II,” establishing the George P. Smith, II, Distinguished Professorship-Chair, and published in 7 INDIANA JOURNAL OF GLOBAL STUDIES 425, 426, 445 (2000).
  10. ^ INDIANA ALUMNI MAGAZINE (Oct. 2007) at p. 50.
  11. ^ Richard A. Posner, book jacket cover comment to George P. Smith, II, DISTRIBUTIVE JUSTICE AND THE NEW MEDICINE, Edgar Press (2008).
  12. ^ Edmund D. Pellegrino, "Dedicatory Remarks," 25 JOURNAL OF CONTEMPORARY HEALTH LAW AND POLICY (2009).
  13. ^ Michael D. Kirby, “Human Rights and Bioethics: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and UNESCO Universal Declaration of Bioethics and Human Rights,” 25 JOURNAL OF CONTEMPORARY HEALTH LAW AND POLICY 309, 311 (2009).
  14. ^ Congressman John T. Myers Tribute to Professor Smith, CONGRESSIONAL RECORD 24550 (Permanent Edition, October 12, 1989).
  15. ^ George P. Smith, II A Bibliographic Tribute, 6 JOURNAL OF CONTEMPORARY HEALTH LAW AND POLICY 483-493 (1990).
  16. ^ Membership Directory, The American Society and the Priory of the United States of America of The Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem (2008) at p. 73.
  17. ^ The Cosmos Club Directory, Washington, D.C. (2010) at p. 71.
  18. ^ American Law Institute Annual Program and Directory of Membership (2010), at p. 49.

External links[edit]