December 29, 1964 - July 22, 2016 It is with great sadness we announce the passing of Kalman S. Zempleny II at age 51 after a brief and sudden illness. In his shortened life he accomplished so much. His smile warmed any room and everyone's heart. Whether it was playing piano or contributing to legal education, Kalman tackled everything with zeal. His zest for life was infectious. He truly never met a stranger. His many friends and family are blessed to have traveled in Kalman's orbit. Kalman was the Executive Director & General Manager of The Rutter Group (TRG), a premier provider of legal education to attorneys and judges throughout the country for over 23 years. Prior to joining The Rutter Group in 1992, Kalman was a solo practitioner in Sherman Oaks, Calif., handling civil, criminal and appellate cases. Kalman received a Juris Doctor degree from Pepperdine University School of Law at the age of 22 and a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Loyola Marymount University at the age of 19. He also studied at Georgetown University and participated in international law programs at Downing College (University of Cambridge), the London School of Economics and the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. He graduated from Notre Dame High School at the age of 16. Kalman was a strong believer in giving back to the community, as is demonstrated by the countless awards and recognitions he has received over the years -- including his years of service to his law school, Pepperdine, alma mater. He was the youngest President of the Alumni Association for all of Pepperdine University (including Undergraduate, School of Law and Graduate schools) for a number of years and served on the Alumni Board for many years. He believed in making sure that lawyers, judges and legal professionals receive top-notch legal education. He served on the board of the Coalition for Justice and also on the Los Angeles County Bar Dispute Resolution Services steering committee for the Robert I. Weil Memorial Lecture since its inception, as well as being a long-time member of the Chancery Club. He was an accomplished musician and an avid traveler, having entertained on cruise ships and for free for thousands of senior citizens over the years. Most recently, Kalman joined the Board of the Friends of Los Angeles County Law Library. Those who were lucky enough to know Kalman as a friend would undoubtedly agree, that with all his talents, Kalman's greatest talent was being a friend. Kalman is survived by his husband and partner of 28 years, attorney Kenneth E. Wright and his mother June L. Zempleny. Those interested are encouraged to give to the following charities:The Friends of the L.A. Law Library; The L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center; The Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles; The Jane Goodall Institute and/or Audubon Aquarium of the Americas. Kalman's friends and family will be gathering Saturday, September 10 at Universal Hilton, noon, to celebrate his life and legacy.
Published in Los Angeles Times from Sep. 1 to Sep. 9, 2016.