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In Memoriam: Randolph W. Thrower

March 11, 2014

It is with great sadness that we mourn the passing of our long-time partner and friend, Randolph W. Thrower, at the age of 100.

Randolph joined Sutherland in 1936, after graduating from Emory Law School. He practiced mainly in the area of federal taxation, including civil and criminal tax controversies, litigation, estate planning and administration, general corporate, and individual tax-related matters. He served as U.S. Commissioner of Internal Revenue from 1969 to 1971. Randolph served as President of the American Bar Foundation, was a member of the American Bar Association House of Delegates, and was a trustee of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law for three decades. 

In 1993, Randolph received the American Bar Association Medal, the ABA’s highest honor, for his public, professional and government service. Randolph held ABA positions that included Chair of the Tax Section, Chair of the Special Committee on the Survey of Legal Needs, Vice Chair of the Pro Bono and Legal Aid Assistance Committee of the Senior Lawyers Division, Advisor to the Council of the Fund for Justice and Education, and member of the Council of the Section of Individual Rights and Responsibilities. In 2003, he was presented with the American Inns of Court Professionalism Award in the Eleventh Circuit. He was also the recipient of the Court of Federal Claims Special Service Award, given in recognition of his contributions to the Court, and the Tax Section’s Distinguished Service Award in 1996.

Randolph was a leader within the firm, as well as the legal community, in promoting opportunities for women and minority lawyers. He served on the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession and on the Task Force on Minorities in the Law, and he chaired the State Bar of Georgia’s Committee on the Involvement of Women and Minorities in the Profession. He also was President of the Atlanta Bar Association, the Atlanta Lawyers Club and the Atlanta Legal Aid Society. In 2013, Randolph played a key role in Atlanta Legal Aid’s capital campaign for its landmark new building, and the entrance gates to the historic building will be named the Randolph and Margaret Thrower Gates of Justice.

In addition to a thriving legal career, Randolph was well-known for the countless hours he devoted to a wide range of civic activities. He chaired the Atlanta Ethics Committee, the Fulton County Advisory Board on Mental Health, and the Metropolitan Atlanta and Georgia Mental Health Associations; served as a trustee on the boards of Clark College and Reinhardt College; chaired the board of Wesleyan College in Macon, Georgia; and was emeritus trustee of Emory University, which awarded him an honorary LL.D. in 1984.

Randolph's family will receive visitors at Patterson's Funeral Home on Friday, March 14 from 5-7 p.m. A Memorial Service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, March 15 at Northside Methodist Church. The family asks that any gifts be made to:

Atlanta Legal Aid
151 Spring Street NW
Atlanta, Georgia 30303
(404) 524-5811

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