Schoedinger Funeral Home Midtown Chapel
229 East State Street
Columbus, OH 43215
(614) 224-6105

Samuel Hamilton Porter

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Samuel Hamilton Porter Obituary
Porter Samuel Hamilton Porter, passed away peacefully surrounded by family on May 5, 2013. He was preceded in death by his parents W. Glover and Ann Porter, brothers and sisters-in-law William (Bebe) Porter and Thomas (Janice) Porter. This lifetime resident of Central Ohio graduated from Columbus Academy and then joined the Navy in the latter part of WWII. Afterward, he graduated from both Amherst College and The Ohio State University College of Law. In 1953 he joined his father W. Glover Porter in what is now the law firm of Porter Wright Morris and Arthur, LLP as its 11th lawyer. The firm has since grown to over 240 lawyers. Sam was a trial lawyer, and loved the courtroom. His career there was remarkable. From his early days defending railroad and bus companies to complex antitrust and utility regulatory cases, he joined a group of other post-WWII generation Columbus trial lawyers whose prominence in the bar had a role in shaping this community. Sam was the lead trial lawyer for the Columbus Board of Education in one of the seminal cases of the Southern District of Ohio - the Columbus busing case. Columbus Board of Education v. Penick, 443 U.S. 449 (1979) - which Sam also argued before the United States Supreme Court. While Sam received many honors with respect to his legal career, including Fellowship in the American College of Trial Lawyers and consistently being recognized in Best Lawyers in America, it was only a part of his contribution to the profession, community and the firm. At an age when many considered retiring, Sam was just beginning what would become another 20 year adventure of teaching law, mediating and arbitrating large and complex disputes, advancing a truly global basis of understanding of the American justice system, serving in leadership positions in the American Bar Association, leading a variety of initiatives for the Ohio Supreme Court to advance administration of justice, and serving as an advocate for indigent criminal defendants. Sam was Chair of the ABA's Section of Public Utility, Communications, and Transportation Law. He was a long-time member of the ABA's House of Delegates, and was, later this summer, to have joined the ABA's Board of Governors. For the past 15 years he taught a seminar at The OSU Moritz College of Law, a role he particularly enjoyed because of the opportunity to interact with law students. At the 55 year mark of his career, he traveled to China to share his insights on the American arbitration system. Seeing a need to provide legal services to indigent defendants, he volunteered to sit second chair in trials of murder cases. He was appointed by the Governor to the Ohio Public Defender Commission where he served as chair, and to the Ohio Legal Assistance Foundation. His community activities reflect his lifelong pursuits of encouraging learning, helping others, and enjoying Colorado mountain air. He served on many boards (often as Chair), including The Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus School for Girls, Crested Butte Mountain Theatre, and Mt. Carmel and Adena Health Systems. Throughout, the most important part of Sam's life was his family. He is survived by his life-long partner, friend and wife, Lucy; their children, Kitty (Tim) Young, Samuel Jr. (Lucy), Bill (Anne), Sarah (Scott) Good; their 14 grandchildren, Ned, Liza and Mac Young, Samuel (Sandi) Porter III, Anne (Charlie) French, Molly, Will and Herb Porter, Thaddeus Davis, Corey, Sydney and Cameron Good; as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Calling hours are 4-7 p.m. Monday, May 13, at Broad Street Presbyterian Church, 760 East Broad Street, Columbus, 43205. Memorial service 11 a.m. Tuesday, May 14 at Broad Street Presbyterian Church. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Broad Street Presbyterian Church, The Columbus Metropolitan Library Foundation, 96 S. Grant Ave., Columbus 43215, or the Crested Butte Mountain Theatre, 403 2nd St., Crested Butte, CO 81224. SCHOEDINGER STATE STREET CHAPEL, 229 E. State St., Columbus, Ohio 43215, phone (614) 224-6105.
Published in The Columbus Dispatch on May 7, 2013
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