Release Date: January 17, 2018
BUFFALO, N.Y. – Hon. Barbara Howe, former New York State Surrogate Judge for Erie County, will receive the University at Buffalo School of Law’s 2018 Edwin F. Jaeckle Award on Friday, Jan. 26.
Howe, a member of the law school’s Class of 1980, will accept the award at the School of Law’s annual New York City Alumni Luncheon to be held at the Union League Club in Manhattan during the week of the New York State Bar Association’s annual meeting.
The highest honor the UB School of Law and the UB Law Alumni Association can bestow, the Jaeckle Award is given annually to a person who exemplifies the highest ideals of the law school and its alumni association and who has made significant contributions to the school and the legal profession.
The Jaeckle Award is named for Edwin F. Jaeckle ’15, a founding partner of the Buffalo law firm Jaeckle, Fleischmann & Mugel and a major benefactor of the school. Howe joins several other esteemed members of the legal community who have previously received this award including Hon. Charles S. Desmond, Hon. Matthew J. Jasen, Manly Fleischmann, Jacob D. Hyman, Hon. M. Dolores Denman and William R. Greiner, among others.
Having just completed her 30th year as a member of the judiciary, Howe served as surrogate judge for Erie County since 2004. She began her judicial career on the Buffalo City Court bench in 1988, and served as a New York State Supreme Court justice from 1992 to 2003.
As judge in one of New York State’s busiest courts, Howe frequently assumed leadership roles on numerous statewide committees. As a member of the New York State Office of Court Administration’s Legislative Advisory Group, she helped to initiate and implement legislation making Erie County Surrogate’s Court the first surrogate’s court in New York State with an e-filing option. She also played an active role in shaping legislative proposals relating to estate and surrogate’s court practice while serving on the Office of Court Administration’s Surrogate’s Court Advisory Committee.
Howe is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate from the University of Connecticut at Storrs where she earned a bachelor’s degree with highest honors. She has a master’s and a doctorate degree in sociology from Cornell University, and a JD from UB School of Law.
In 1974, she joined the sociology department at the University at Buffalo as a member of its faculty. In 1988, she gave up her academic tenure to become a member of the judiciary. While on the bench, she served as an adjunct clinical professor of law at UB, and as an adjunct associate professor of sociology. She has authored numerous articles in sociology and the law, and more than 50 of her judicial decisions have been published by the New York State Reporter.
A former president of the UB Law Alumni Association and a past recipient of the Association’s Distinguished Alumni Award for the Judiciary, Howe has maintained close ties with the law school throughout her academic and judicial career, teaching several courses, chairing the dean’s search for former Dean Nils Olsen, and actively promoting and participating in the law school’s mentor program.