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In Memoriam: Max Justice, 1945-2020

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  • February 07, 2020

Charlotte, N.C. – Max Justice, a beloved former partner in Parker Poe’s Charlotte office, died on January 31. Max was a friend, mentor, and colleague to everyone who knew him. He was one of North Carolina’s leading environmental lawyers and had a true gift in his ability to teach others how to practice law.

“Max will always have a special place in our lives and hearts,” Managing Partner Tom Griffin says. “He had a special gift, the ability to infuse both his legal work and his friendships with warmth, wisdom, kindness, and humor. He was a mentor to me and many others at our firm, and he had a positive impact on everyone who met him. There is very little chance that we would be the firm that we are, or that I would be the lawyer or person that I am, without having had Max in our family. I will miss him very much, as will we all.”

“If ever someone lived up to the expression ‘larger than life,’ it was him,” Max’s obituary in The Charlotte Observer reads. “Max never missed one of his kids' ballgames, and he never slighted a client. At Christmas, he'd make everyone watch 'Christmas Vacation' and laugh like he'd never seen it before. Daily he read articles of interest from his beloved Wall Street Journal to his wife, Karen, emailing them along to family, friends and clients.”

“Max graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 1967 with a B.A. in political science,” the obituary continues. “He spent his college summers selling dictionaries throughout the Deep South to put himself through school. During the Freedom Summer of 1964, he went door-to-door in Alabama, braving the violence raging over civil rights. After graduating from Wake Forest University School of Law in 1970 (serving as associate editor of the Law Review), he joined the Charlotte law firm of what was then Grier, Parker and Poe, now Parker Poe - and never left. Here is where he put down his professional roots, learning the practice of law as he developed a niche in the newly emerging environmental arena. He was a critical component in its development and growth, for which he received multiple honors for his environmental law work. Max was an active member of the Carolinas Air Pollution Control Association, serving on its board and as a past-president. He was admitted and qualified as an Attorney and Chancellor of the Supreme Court of the United States ... the accolades go on and on.”

You can learn more about Max’s life and impact in his full obituary.