Jamie Anne Grodsky
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JAMIE ANNE GRODSKY Feb 23, 1956-May 22, 2010 A golden-haired, beautiful person with an exceptional mind, she was struck down by a rare disease at the peak of her life and career. Jamie was a Professor of Environmental Law who had also served as a lawyer in all three branches of our Federal Government. She was born in San Francisco and attended Hamlin's and Burkes. She received her BA degree, With Distinction, from Stanford University where she was elected Senior Class President. Jamie spent a year, with backpack and guitar, exploring Appalachia, being handed from family to family by people she met and enchanted. A highlight was an evening playing guitar on his porch with the great Doc.Watson. With curiosity and concern, she walked with the Native Americans from Calif. to Utah during their protest march to Washington D,C.. She then served as Educational Director of the S.F. Oceanic Society where she founded Sea Camp, a maritime educational program for children. This was followed by a stint at Woods Hole Oceanographic Instit. In Marine Policy. After receiving an MA from UC Berkeley in Economic Geography, she spent 5 yrs as an Analyst at the US Congress Office of Technology and Assessment where she wrote on information technology and economic competition. She subsequently received her Law Degree from Stanford, where she was Articles Editor of Stanford Law Review, and received the Murie Award in Environmental Law and the Ochlmann Prize for Legal Writing. She returned to Washington as Counsel to the Committee on Natural Resources, US House of Representatives, and later as Counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee. This was followed by a Judicial Clerkship with the Chief Judge of the Ninth Circuit Court (the Hon. Proctor Hug) in Reno, who referred to her as "The most multitalented person I have ever met." Afterward, she was Senior Advisor to the General Counsel of the EPA with a focus on biotechnology regulation and environmental justice. She began her ultimate academic career as a Professor of Law at the Univ. of Minnesota and, until her death, was a tenured Professor of Environmental Law at George Washington Law School in Wash. DC. She published numerous articles and reports focused on how environmental law must adapt to new biological and technical development (e.g. increased risk, based on an individual's DNA and biomarkers). Her publications are widely quoted and the last two were each chosen as one of the top 5 law review articles in the US. Jamie was a caring and dedicated teacher. She loved to energize and excite her students, but in an even-handed, warm supportive style. "Enthusiasm, command of materiel, and accessibility are exceptional" was a typical evaluation by her students. Jamie was an outgoing young woman with a quick sense of humor and bright smile. She endeared everyone by making them feel that their lives were beautiful. She was an untaught, but accomplished sketch artist and blue grass guitarist, and loved nature and the outdoors. Jamie was predeceased by her mother Kayla and is survived by her father, Gerold Grodsky of San Francisco, her sister, Andrea Huber of Washington, D.C., her uncle and aunt, Myron & Prisella Grodsky of St. Louis, aunt Judy Wolfe of Salt Lake City and many close cousins. Private family interment. All friends are invited to a gathering at 501 Beal Street, S.F., CA on Thursday, May 27th from 2 to 6 pm. In lieu of flowers donations to the charity of your choice.

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Published in San Francisco Chronicle from May 25 to May 26, 2010.
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49 entries
December 6, 2010
I met Jamie in 2007 and just learned of her untimely death. She was such an incredibly energetic, intelligent, and dedicated woman who had so much to offer. A tremendous loss.
Warren Leonard
June 24, 2010
Jamie was such a remarkable person in every way.

All of us were so lucky to have had Jamie in our lives and will carry her passion and values with us, though the world will certainly not be the same without her.

Love to Dr. Grodsky, Andrea and the kids, and other family and friends,

Larry
Larry Ottinger
June 5, 2010
So sorry to hear of you loss.
Barbara Folberg-Robinson
June 3, 2010
Jamie was a wonderfully warm and generous person. A credit to humanity and a true tzadik (righteous person).

When the temple stood in the ancient city of Jerusalem, mourners walked through the gates and into the courtyard along a specifically designated mourner’s path.
As they walked, they came face to face with all the other members of the community, who greeted them with the ancestor of the blessing, “May God comfort you among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.” In this way, the community embraced those suffering bereavement, yet allowed for unique experiences of grief.

May you “May God comfort her family members and friends among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.”

"For the brokenness of the daughter of my people I am broken; I mourn, dismay has taken hold of me." Jeremiah 8:21 .

Condolences on your loss.

Itzchak Kornfeld,( Jerusalem, Israel)
Itzchak Kornfeld
June 3, 2010
Jamie was an inspiring enivronmentalist who lived a life of purpose and commitment. We will miss her and carry forward the values she lived.
Irma Russell, Missoula MT
June 2, 2010
Jamie was a beautiful, genuine, immediately likeable woman who always lit up the room at environmental law teacher gatherings with her bright smile, positive energy and sense of humor. I will miss her very much. Perhaps those who loved Jamie can take some comfort in knowing that she was a shining star in the field of legal scholarship, leaving behind a significant legacy of creative original writing cited by scores of other legal scholars. Her brilliant mind will have an abiding influence on future legal scholars and policy makers, while the memory of her bright spirit will be carried on in many of our hearts.
Lin Harmon
June 2, 2010
Jamie glowed with the brilliance of her intellect, her enthusiasm for ideas, especially for protecting the environment, and her capacity to convey all of this to others.

--House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
May 30, 2010
Like everyone, I am upset to hear of Jamie’s passing. I got to know Jamie at Stanford mostly because she hung around with the Mono Basin Research Group at Mono Lake in 1976. On July 4,1976, the 200th birthday of the USA, Jamie and I and a couple others swam out to the volcanic islands in Mono Lake, a memorable experience. At Mono Lake, we all used to sleep outside, without tents, on the grassy area between the Poplar lined streams and the sagebrush. Several rattlesnakes were found in this area over the course of the summer. I remember Jamie telling me a story one night that the old time cowboys used to soak their ropes in kerosene and surround their sleeping bags with the rope to keep away the rattlesnakes. The next year I remember a paper Jamie had written for her Environmental Policy class on the New Melones Dam. She had gone and interviewed a bunch of people and turned it into a paper. I had no idea at the time a student could write a paper in this style for a college course and I copied the style the next time I wrote a paper. Jamie came to our Mono Basin Research Group reunion in 2006. It was great see her. She was as silly and bubbly and energetic and enthusiastic as ever. Like everyone, I will miss her greatly.
Jeff Robins
May 30, 2010
We loved your incandescent smile
We cheered your scintillating style
So blissfully bereft of guile
We will see you in awhile
Bob Bonaparte
May 29, 2010
I fondly remember driving down Big Cottonwood Canyon with Jamie following an afternoon of Nordic skiing at Solitude and witnessing together a not-so-small four or five-foot diameter boulder suddenly roll out onto the road about 100 feet in front of our car - an event you don't see every day - and then regaining our collective breath over cocktails at the Cotton Bottom Inn. Jamie's contributions to the law and academia are nothing short of remarkable. My sincere sympathies to Jamie's family.
James Farmer
May 29, 2010
Dear Andrea and Gerry,
My family just informed me about Jamie's passing and I felt a need to contact the two of you. I didn't know Jamie well except for one month about 45 years ago when we played tennis together at the Cal Tennis Club. I remember this cute kid with her long strawberry blond hair who was about half my size. She preferred to play with older guys because she was good, so every day we would rally together for about an hour. At first our rallies were relaxing and somewhat social but they soon morphed into competitive fun. She could hit the ball pretty deep and would enjoy putting it away when she had the opportunity. I looked forward to her company that summer, especially after playing, when we could joke about our fierce matches. Jamie was so mature at such a young age. I remember thinking how funny it was that we could be tennis buddies when I was 13 or 14 and she was 10 or 11. She already knew how to enjoy each moment and make every moment important and fun too. I'm struck by the details of my memory of Jamie, and after reading about Jamie's amazing accomplishments, it makes sense that the person I knew then will always have such a positive impact on so many lives. I'm very sorry.
David Lauter
David Lauter
May 29, 2010
I had a chance to meet Jamie a few times when she was at the University of Minnesota Law School. It was nice of her to take time out of her busy schedule to get together with a distant cousin. I even had a chance to meet her parents when they were in Minnesota for a visit. She was creative, brilliant and an inspiration to all. May memories of Jamie be a source of comfort to all.
Bill Wolpert
May 28, 2010
As an administrator at George Washinton University Law School, I saw first hand how deeply Jamie cared for her students - always making sure that everything was just right for her classes. Her beautiful smile brightened many a day for me. Because I grew up in the Adirondack Park, we often exchanged stories about being in the great outdoors. She was a friend. I will miss her very much.
Rosanne O'Hara
May 27, 2010
Jamie was my roommate during our sophomore year at Stanford. Living with her was like waking up to sunshine every single day...and how many people can you say that about, and mean it? Every single memory I have of Jamie is filled with smiles, laughter, and life lived in the moment. To Jamie's family, my heartfelt wishes for peace and healing.
Marji Baker Wilkens
May 27, 2010
I'm so sad to hear this news. I remember Jamie from our days at Hamlins in the late 60s and the great times we had playing tennis and sailing with her dad. She was so special, brilliant, and kind. My thoughts and prayers go out to Andrea and Dr. Grodsky.
Melissa Kennedy
May 27, 2010
Jamie and I worked together on several projects at George Washington University Law School, but we bonded over our tabby cats. This is a terrible loss for our community. My heartfelt sympathies to Jamie's family.
Gina Harris
May 27, 2010
It is so sad to hear this news. Although I had lost contact with Jamie, she is one of the personalities from Burke's whose image is the clearest to me. I remember her as a whirlwind of vibrant activity - full of laughter. I can recall her determination to order the hamburger with ice cream combo at the Hippo - can't remember whether she actually ate it, though.
To Jamie's family -- I am so sorry for your loss, and I wish you a long life.
Joanna Koenigsberg
May 26, 2010
I did not know Ms Grodsky. However, as a native San Francisco our family's sympathize. 'Bad things happen to good people' by Rabbi Harold S Kushner speaks volumes for most of us who have lost loved ones to a trajedy.
Jon Michael
May 26, 2010
I am in shock from the news of Jamie's passing. I have known Jamie since she worked on a couple of my projects during her tenure at the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment, Washington, DC. I last saw her at the xOTA/xOSTP resunion at Glen Echo MD, less than a year ago, where she was doing great and full of energy and activities. This is a tragic loss. I honor Jamie and all the wonderful values, commitments, activities, and future directions that she embodied. I will help carry on her flame of passion for civil rights & liberties, environmental protection, sustainable living, and respect for the natural world. May her Soul rest in peace. With heartfelt sympathy for Jamie's family, friends, and colleagues from Coast to Coast.
Fred Wood
May 26, 2010
Words don't do justice to describe the profound loss of a loved one. Still, I believe Jamie would not be one to mourn death but to celebrate life. Hers was a lifelong passion and pursuit to protect the environment and make all our lives better for it. Beyond that, I met Jamie at summer tennis camp when she was fourteen; I was twelve. That was forty years ago. Yet, fresh today is her cheerful smile; her bright, bubbly personality;
and an infectious, unbridled laugh that memory will never forget.
Fentress Hill
May 26, 2010
Please extend my sincerest sympathies and condolences to Jamie's father. She and I recently had a conversation about how much she loved and adored him. I will truly miss Jamie - she has been a best friend and confidant, a teammate, a bridesmaid and an intellectual and spiritual inspiration. Her passing is a loss to all life on this planet that she loved so much.
Emily Wilkins Mattison
Emily Mattison
May 26, 2010
It seems as though a great shadow has passed over the land and heartstrings are wrought asunder by her passing. But we can revel in the memories of her having held our hands and walked with us along the way for just a little while. It is said that “a thing of beauty is a joy forever”; and thus—because her beauty was expressed on so many fronts--we can count on those torn heartstrings being rejuvenated by such wonderful manifistations of a life fully lived. Jamie lived in our camper for a couple of weeks while she explored central Florida. Few would have managed to include New Smyrna Beach in a walkabout along the Appalachian Trail; but, then, that would have been Jamie!
Fred Savage
May 26, 2010
I worked briefly with Jamie at The George Washington University where I am the director of sustainability. She and I met through my sister-in-law who worked alongside her at the Murie Institute. Jamie was an amazing woman who brought a powerful energy to the environmental field. Her intellect and insight made great contributions and impact on the world she has left behind. She will be missed.
Meghan Chapple-Brown
May 26, 2010
I worked with Jamie at the Oceanic Society in the 70's. The programs she put together, at the very beginning of an incredible career, were a hint of what she would go on to accomplish. She was great fun to work with, intelligent but with great faith in humanity. She also purchased her guitars from my late husband, Noel Duckett, at the 5th String in SF. He said she was one of the most incredible students, picked up the most complicate riffs immediately! Godspeed, Jamie.
Jane Piereth
May 26, 2010
Dear Jerry and family, I was so shocked to learn of Jamie's passing. My thoughts and prayers are with you. When I was at UCSF, I remember you and Kayla being so proud of her. Her birthday was one day short of mine and altho she was just a teenager then, I knew she would be amazingly successful even then. If I could, I would join you at her memorial tomorrow, but unable due to distance and time. I will be there in spirit. I have numerous friends in environmental law and we have just spoken and we are all sending you our love and condolences.
Donna Chaban-Delmas
May 26, 2010
I cannot remember a brighter smile or laugh than Jamie's from my time at Stanford. At Columbae, she and I would pretend to be Irish - O'Grodsky and O'Carlos. I think the idea came from her striking red hair. She is missed.
Carlos Alcala
May 26, 2010
I remember Jamie so well from her backpacking year when she spent a short time with our family in Oakland FL. She was a delightful and very interesting young lady in those growing up years. My deepest sympathy to her family. Sincerely, Betty Burch
Betty Burch
May 25, 2010
I remember Jamie from the late 60's and (very) early 70's when she was a fellow tennis-team member at Burke's high school in San Francisco. Her enthusiasm and determination were inspiring, and her sense of humor was endearing. She carried an eternal flame of optimism that I can easily recall, even though I have not seen or spoken to her since. What a tragic loss for all those whose lives she's touch in the past, as well as those whose lives she was destined to inspire in the future. Andrea, my prayers go out to you and your family.
Margan Mitchell
May 25, 2010
What a bright light has gone out! Jamie and I were two of four roommates sharing a big room one quarter in our college co-op. She stands out in my memory as one of the most lively, interesting, and just plain nice people I've ever met. I'm grateful I got to speak to her on the phone once not too long ago--that same voice! My heartfelt condolences to all who were close to her.
Kathleen Christensen
May 25, 2010
The last time I saw Jamie was when she was planning to travel in far reaches of the world with only her backpack. She and I had a connection in our desires to do what we loved despite the fact that those who loved us, were nervous for us. She was a free spirit and a joy to be around. I will always remember her beauty, which ran deep. Love, Jan Mitchell
Jan Mitchell
May 25, 2010
Professor Grodsky was brilliant, incredibly hard-working and passionate. Moreover she was always humble and kind. I will think of her often and miss her greatly.
Kasey Place
May 25, 2010
I was one of Jamie's classmates at Burkes so long ago...I have such fond memories of her and was thrilled to see her again at a Burkes function recently. She was charming, energetic, enthusiastic, beautiful and full of life. She was truly a treasure- my deepest sympathy to her family.
Norma Saiz
May 25, 2010
I remember Jamie from her time at the French House at Stanford. She possessed a beauty and lightness of spirit. I recall her loving nature and the outdoors -- and the imagery of her biking around campus with flowing hair is how I remember her, as well. It makes perfect sense that she accomplished so much in her lifetime and found her professional calling in environmental law. A vibrant spirit, perfectly natural and effervescent.
Meredith Lobel-Angel
May 25, 2010
I was a colleague of Jamie's when we both taught at the University of Minnesota. I was very saddened to learn of her passing. Those of us privileged to know Jamie will miss her terribly.
Jim Chen
May 25, 2010
I'm so sorry to hear of Jamie's passing. We worked at OTA together, and I will always remember her beautiful smile.
Gail Kouril
May 25, 2010
I met Jamie "Garage Key" at Paul's Saloon, where she was one of the worthy ones that was asked on stage for a performance on Jam Night. What a brilliant, wonderful, sensitive person. A terrible loss.
Tony Miller
May 25, 2010
Jamie was bright, lively, and quick to smile -- she was also immensely talented, and I feel as though I didn't know the half of it. She touched the lives of many, and will be sorely missed by all of us.
Edward Swaine
May 25, 2010
May 25, 2010

We were so saddened by the news of Jamie's death. We have been friends of the family for several years and have enjoyed our wonderful visits with Jamie each time she came to the valley. We have lost a very special friend and lovely person. Gerry, we are thinking of you during this very sad time.
Sally and Gordon Taubenheim
May 25, 2010
I was a student in Professor Grodsky's environmental law class and have never encountered a teacher who brought such vibrancy and excitement to her class sessions. She truly was a unique person, and I will continue to draw on her academic, and more importantly, life lessons, long into the future.
Andrew Satten
May 25, 2010
We will miss you so much Jamie - it was great to connect with you in DC- Thank you for your wonderful spirit that loved everyone and everything about life - My sympathies to Jamie's family, her friends, and fellow hockey and lacrosse teammates - Kristina
Kristina Johnson
May 25, 2010
I have great memories of Jamie. Alas, all of them date back to the 70s and 80s. I remember taking her on a moped tour of Marin circa 1980. After several hours zipping around on our two mopeds we came back across the Golden Gate Bridge. I remember stopping midspan (on the sidewalk!) and admiring the view. Despite the long day, Jamie was still so full of energy and inspiration. I remember being distincly in awe of this woman, as most people would be dragging by then. But for Jamie...there was still tons of energy left in reserve. It was so inspiring to stop on the bridge and share that moment with her. It was so many years ago, but still feels like yesterday. I will miss her dearly.
Scott Dingwell
May 25, 2010
Professor Grodsky was a wonderfully warm and enthusiastic teacher. She will be greatly missed by her students at GW Law.
Alexandria Perrin
May 25, 2010
May Professor Jamie Grodsky rest in peace! May God bless her family during this tragic time!
Darshani Don
May 25, 2010
No bond is as great as that between a parent and child. Our deepest condolences are with you as you grieve.
Charlotte & Bill Savidge
May 25, 2010
Rana Dotson
May 25, 2010
What a light was Jamie. What a life Jamie lived! With a laugh, a smile, a concern, an available moment or minute (or hour). Flowing hair biking around Stanford’s campus. Flowing spirit encircling and embracing everyone who knew her. Jamie…your enthusiasm, wit, love, insight and compassion will be missed…and never forgotten. WW ?
Walt Spevak
May 25, 2010
There are so many reasons that I will never forget Jamie. Her work ethic was truly inspiring and her contributions to her community were too many to count. I hope their many warm memories of her are a comfort to all of her family and friends.
Theresa Gabaldon
May 25, 2010
Jamie was a distinguished legal scholar; a gifted, warm, and devoted teacher; and a splendid colleague to us all at George Washington University Law School. We will miss her deeply.
Chip Lupu
May 25, 2010
I am so saddened by this news. I met Jamie for the first time this past Christmas when she was staying at her father's place in Napa. I am a neighbor and she invited me over for a glass of wine and wonderful conversation. She was such a vibrant and interesting person it is hard for me to believe she is gone. My heart goes out to her father in this terrible time of grief.
Polly Ogden
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