On March 9, 2023, we celebrate Judge James L Buckley’s 100th birthday. Judge Buckley is part of an “exclusive club” of Americans who have served our country with distinction in all three branches of the federal government. Including his service as a United States senator from New York, as a presidential appointee during the administration of President Ronald Reagan, and as a federal judge.
In his roles as a World War II U.S. naval officer, American civil servant, politician, jurist, attorney, businessman, and author, Judge Buckley has touched countless lives in remarkable ways.
TFAS Trustee Emeritus Neal B. Freeman celebrated Buckley’s birthday milestone this week in an op-ed in National Review. Freeman writes: “Into his hundredth year, he writes letters of reference, connects friend with friend, consoles the aggrieved, counsels the confused, and, always and everywhere, rises eloquently to the defense of his family, his country, and his Faith.”
TFAS alumnus Herb Stupp ’70 wrote about Buckley’s many accolades in an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal. Stupp celebrated his century of service and called for Americans to honor Buckley’s long career: “Despite his exemplary public service, Mr. Buckley has yet to be honored in the way he deserves,” he wrote. “There are public landmarks named for former U.S. senators from New York, including the Moynihan Train Hall, the Javits Center and the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge. But nothing as yet for Mr. Buckley.”
Despite his exemplary public service, Mr. Buckley has yet to be honored in the way he deserves. There are public landmarks named for former U.S. senators from New York, including the Moynihan Train Hall, the Javits Center and the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge. But nothing as yet for Mr. Buckley.” – Herb Stupp
Buckley visited TFAS headquarters in July 2019 and spoke to TFAS Law Fellows about what caused the state’s deteriorating powers and how we can return to our founding fathers’ original intent. Following his remarks, students were able to engage in a discussion with him and ask him questions.
Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska, the 2021 recipient of the TFAS Congressional Leadership Award, honored Buckley with an official statement on the House Floor, sharing the impact of Buckley’s career while recounting the remarks he shared on “courageous leadership” and Buckley at the TFAS Scholarship Awards Dinner. Watch the video below.
As Judge Buckley celebrates his 100th birthday, TFAS thanks him for his work with the organization over the years. TFAS President Roger Ream ’76 expressed gratitude to Jim Buckley for his service to the country and the conservative movement.
“We are grateful for Judge Buckley’s lifetime of service to the country and to the conservative movement, Ream said. “He is an inspiration to so many of integrity, commitment to principle and honorable leadership.”
As a small tribute to Judge Buckley’s remarkable life of public service, TFAS is establishing a James L. Buckley TFAS Law Fellowship. The fellowship will be awarded to top law students from throughout the country who apply to TFAS Summer Law Fellowship program.
TFAS is delighted that Judge Buckley has agreed to lend his name to this fellowship, which strives to educate a rising generation of young lawyers, giving them the tools to defend the ideals of a free society rooted in individual liberty, limited government, free enterprise, and constitutional originalism.