November 15, 2015

Maury Poscover: First Recipient of Award Named in His Honor

Left: Paul “Chip” L. Lion III, BLS Chair 2014–15, presents the Maury B. Poscover Extraordinary Contribution Award to its first recipient, Maury B. Poscover, former BLS Delegate to the ABA House of Delegates.

At the Business Law Section Annual Meeting Section Lunch on September 18, 2015, Maury B. Poscover was named the first recipient of the Maury B. Poscover Extraordinary Contribution Award. According to former Business Law Section Chair Paul “Chip” Lion III, “Maury has provided a lifetime of extraordinary service to the ABA and the Business Law Section. His efforts and commitment to the ABA and the Section are unmatched. His service – from Section chair to serving in the ABA House of Delegates for 16 years – is truly remarkable. Maury has an ability to explain complex issues and build consensus and this has strengthened the voice of the ABA and has improved the legal profession.”

In front of more than 350 of his fellow ABA and Business Law Section colleagues and friends, Maury B. Poscover made the following remarks:

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The morning after I talked to Chip about my receiving this award and its permanent name, I woke from a dream: 30 years from now, there was a woman receiving this award. She looked at the plaque bearing my name. She looked at the glassware and was thinking, “Who in the hell is this guy Poscover?”

Who, indeed?

Well, this guy Poscover is the grandson of immigrants who in 1906 left what was then Russia and now probably the Ukraine. His father’s parents came to this country fairly penniless and without skills to earn a living but eager for the opportunity to create a better life for themselves and their children yet unborn and, most importantly, to be in a place where they could express themselves freely.

This guy Poscover is the son of an immigrant mother who fled Poland in 1921 with her 14-year-old brother and 16-year-old sister seeking freedom from oppression and blatant discrimination. Neither of his parents graduated from high school nor did they have much money. However, Poscover was the beneficiary of a lot of love and support.

His first job was to clean restrooms on Sunday morning at his father’s tavern in a working-class neighborhood of north St. Louis. His father was not one to give advice. But his father did so that morning: “If you take a job, do the very best you can whether it is: cleaning toilets or being president of the United States.”

Poscover was the first of his family to go to college – let alone law school. And 49 years ago, he made the best decision of his life and married Lorrie Wexler, who singlehandedly encouraged him to go to law school. He has three wonderful children, including his oldest Michael, who is here today, and each of them has a loving spouse. He has eight lively, creative, exciting grandchildren, including Zachary who is also here.

On July 2, 1969, Poscover joined the law firm of Husch, Eppenberger, Donohue Elson and Cornfeld, which is now Husch Blackwell. He still benefits from colleagues who are bright, able professionals who continue to mentor and support him. Thanks to my colleagues who are here today. He has had a career that he could not have imagined when he entered the practice of law

Yep, that is Poscover. That is me.

As I look around the room and see so many people with whom I have worked professionally and now count as my friends, I am reminded of the prayer at the Rosh Hashanah Service, “Unetah Lohef – Affirmation of the Day,” in which we recited: “Who shall be truly alive and who shall merely exist?”

I have tried my best to be truly alive each and every day. And I don’t plan on stopping soon. Special thanks to the Business Law Section staff: Sue, Mark, Leslie, and all of the others. They are not staff, they are my friends. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.