DECEMBER 6, 1995
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: Good afternoon. This is one of those days in the life of the Supreme Court, Dennis Archer will remember well. It’s a happy day when everybody wins; nobody can lose in this room today, that’s for sure.
So we have what looks like a very good program, and I am looking forward to observing. We have the best seats in the house, as you can see, and so, we obviously want to welcome all the Archer family and friends, and those of you who are friends of the Court and people who have been involved with the Archers over the years. We welcome you all here today. And with that, I want to now introduce Charles Rutherford, who will make opening remarks.
On behalf of the Board of Directors and all the members of the Michigan Supreme Court Historical Society, we thank you for this opportunity to appear and participate in this special session of the Court.
The members of this Court are familiar with the existence and the work of the society, since you are all members of the society. For those in the audience who are not familiar, allow me to say that the society was organized as a nonprofit corporation in 1988 for the purpose of preserving documents, records, and memorabilia relating to the Supreme Court and to promote public education and awareness of the historical significance of this Court.
As you know, there is a Bureau of History within the office of the Michigan Secretary of State, and there is a Michigan Historical Commission, but it seemed that there was no special focus on things historical relating to the judicial branch of government. So, the society was formed to fill that need. That was in 1988.
Now, seven years later, there are notable accomplishments to report to the Court. Let me just take a few seconds to identify them. The society has collected a dozen oral histories of former Michigan Supreme Court justices. We have also published an index of the special sessions of the Court, much as this one today, which, as you know, are recorded in the front of the official volumes of the Michigan Reports and which are cross-indexed by date, ceremony, honoree, and speakers.
The society has held four annual luncheon meetings around the state in Detroit, Grand Rapids, Southfield, and Lansing, which you, the Members of the Court, have graciously attended. Each luncheon meeting was accompanied by a legal vignette about the Michigan Supreme Court, presented by Justice THOMAS E. BRENNAN, Justice JOHN W. FITZGERALD, Dean John Wesley Reed, and Judge Charles W. Joiner.
But perhaps the most important thing we do is facilitate the painting and presentation of portraits of former justices as a way of recording and preserving the history of the Court. Your former colleague, Justice JAMES RYAN said the following about portraits, “For the preservation of the Court’s precious history in the awakened memory of those who observe it and in order to stimulate scholarly research about the Court, by those who come after us, nothing serves as well as a portrait of the justices who lived and helped make the history of the Court.”
The Michigan Supreme Court Historical Society believes that the history of the Court, more than any other branch of government, is a history of the justices who sit on the Court. Each time a justice changes, the Court changes. So, we believe that it is important to have not only a record of who sat and what they wrote but also a visual impression of that justice.
Since this society began, we have presented the portraits of Chief Justice G. MENNEN WILLIAMS, Justice TALBOT SMITH, Chief Justice THOMAS GILES KAVANAGH, Chief Justice JOHN W. FITZGERALD, Justice JAMES L. RYAN, Justice ROBERT P. GRIFFIN, and, now, Justice DENNIS ARCHER. Soon to follow is a portrait of Justice EUGENE F. BLACK.
You should also know that the society has not only facilitated the painting and presenting of the eight portraits I just named, but also, we are supporting a program of portrait and photo restorations, which will be reported on at a future special session.
Let me end this report by stating that none of the work of the society relating to the historical happenings of the Michigan Supreme Court would have been possible without the support of the individual members of this Court since our formation in 1988.
One of those members, former Justice DENNIS W. ARCHER is being honored today, and we are pleased to be a part of this historical special happening in Michigan Supreme Court history.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: Now, we shall hear from the president of the State Bar, Tom Kienbaum.
MR. KIENBAUM: Thank you, your Honor, Mr. Chief Justice, associate justices, Justice ARCHER, Mayor Archer—one of the problems is you don’t know what to call him because he has done so many things—family and friends. Your Honors, as Chief Justice BRICKLEY indicated, I have the privilege of serving as the president of the State Bar of Michigan. In that capacity I represent over 30,000 lawyers and those lawyers wish me to say that they are proud to be lawyers, in large part, because of the accomplishments of the honoree today. It is an extraordinary record, and it’s hard to imagine a lawyer doing more than our honoree. First, as a distinguished lawyer in what I consider to be one of the finest firms in the country, then he became State Bar President, which I somewhat selfishly believe is some accomplishment, and thereafter, of course, he served on this Court, an immense honor, and thereafter stepped down to prepare himself for public service as Mayor of the City of Detroit. It is indeed an extraordinary record, and we, as lawyers in the State of Michigan, wish to salute you and thank you for all that you have done, and we suspect that it may not be the end of the story.
On a personal note, I was privileged and enriched to be able to call Justice ARCHER my partner for two years before he became Mayor of Detroit. In those years, when he was already working twenty-eight hours a day, he never had too little time to stop by to work with his partners, to, share time, and to become a friend of ours, and we are truly privileged to have been your partners.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: Now, I want to call on the Honorable Anna Diggs Taylor of the United States District Court.
Anthony T. Kronman, the Dean of the Yale Law School has recently published a book which is entitled the Lost Lawyer1, in which he contends that lawyers, legal academics, and judges are in now a professional identity crisis, if unacknowledged, of large portions because of the demise of those leaders among us who were known as lawyer-statesmen in the nineteenth century.
Their number included Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, Webster, Marshall, and, of this century, Henry Stimson, Dean Atchinson, John McCloy, and certainly Earl Warren.
Those lawyer-statesmen, he defined as lawyers possessed of great practical wisdom, exceptional persuasive powers, a keen awareness of the limitations and the politics of their fellow human beings—the very ideal, in their day, of professional excellence.
This ideal was to begin with a devoted citizen who cared about the public good and was willing to sacrifice his own well-being for it, unlike those who use the law merely to advance their private ends.
Moreover, these persons had a special talent for discovering where the public good lies and for fashioning those arrangements needed to secure it. The lawyer-statesman is a leader in the realm of public life, and other citizens look to him for guidance. He is not a servant who prepares the way for other’s ends, but he leads his fellow citizens to a better understanding of their own interests and guides their choices among alternative goals.
Can there be any doubt but that Dennis Archer personifies, in our own generation, the classic ideal of which Kronman wrote?
In the practice of law he became a national leader among his peers, and through his statesmanship and persuasive powers, opened new doors for a whole generation of minority lawyers.
His feeling for the human aspirations of the entire body politic led him to appointment and to election to this, the highest Court in our State, and then from this place of high honor, Dennis looked back at his city in crisis and saw, as T. E. Lawrence has written, “There [is] no honour in a sure success. . . ,”2 So he left this chamber of infallibility and cast his future onto what was then a very uncertain line for the larger future for all of us in Southeastern Michigan.
Dennis still stands on that line, exposed totally to the political storms, but keeping a constant course, always in good faith and good humor and good conscience, and always understanding the limitations of weaker persons.
This Court honors all lawyers in hanging here the portrait of a man who, even today, honors our proudest ideals. Our children and the generations that follow them will be reminded in seeing his portrait that the greatest of American lawyers remain the bold, the risk takers, the imaginative, and the understanding.
My congratulations to this Court on this recognition that our ideals still live. May his portrait long grace these chambers.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: Now, I would like to call on David Christensen from the law firm of Charfoos and Christensen.
Today, we dedicate a small amount of time to the presentation of a portrait that commemorates the service that Dennis Archer provided to the Supreme Court.
And as I pondered this occasion, I questioned for a moment why we do it, why we meet, why we gather with such people at such events.
It occurred to me that none of us contributed to the artistry that completed the portrait, and none of us will engage in the physical labor that will place in position the portrait. But yet we set aside this time, and of course we know why. We deem it important to give public statement and open affirmation to events that mark our lives.
We celebrate birthdays and anniversaries because we measure our development, and we pause to reflect and be grateful for the gift of life. Life would be shallow indeed if we failed to stop, rest, remember, and reflect upon events that matter.
One such event was the service of Dennis Archer to the Supreme Court of our State. He was a public servant whose service was important, not merely for the content of the opinions that he wrote, but important because of his commitment to the qualities of life that his service personifies.
He was committed to this Court. He was and is committed to the rule of law that serves as the foundation for our society. He was and is committed to open and honest government, to hard work. The application of his talent to the task before him is legendary.
But fundamentally, he is committed to the values that mark his family and his faith and represent the core of his being.
His public service was and is a commitment to decency and fairness.
Today, this portrait and this occasion need to personify and perpetuate the qualities that we find valuable in Dennis Archer. In celebrating this occasion, we reaffirm those qualities and values, and we earnestly hope that their application here and in the future will nourish our culture and validate the values that guide our lives, both public and private.
It’s a singular honor to have been invited to participate in this occasion. While I speak alone, I would like the Court and Dennis to know that I represent two other generations of Christensens here today. My father, Cecil Christensen who was a former postal inspector in Detroit came with me to deliver this message, and my son, Matthew Joseph, who is a current first grader, came to deliver the message and to wish his godfather well on this wonderful day.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: And now Reginald M. Turner, Jr., former law clerk for Justice ARCHER.
MR. TURNER: Good afternoon, Justice BRICKLEY, members of the Court, may it please the Court. I am very privileged and honored to be standing before you today on this occasion when I honor someone who has been one of the most important people in my life since my days here as a law clerk at the Michigan Supreme Court.
The two years that I spent as a law clerk for Justice DENNIS ARCHER were two of the most edifying years of my life. During this period, I and my law-clerk colleagues had the unique opportunity to spend a tremendous amount of high quality time with a man I have come to regard as one of the most distinguished jurists in Michigan history. Through our association with Justice ARCHER, we learned first-hand what it meant to be a complete lawyer and also what it meant to be a complete person.
The education and training provided by Justice ARCHER during our clerkships was primarily focused upon scholarly research and analysis of the issues presented by the cases on the Court’s docket. But the learning did not stop there. We were constantly reminded that the lawyer’s professional responsibilities are not limited to those displayed in a brief or even at trial or oral argument. He taught us that high quality, zealous service to clients has to be supplemented by a lawyer’s public service role as an officer of the court with concomitant obligations to work to improve the administration of justice and the delivery of legal services to the public, particularly, to disadvantaged persons who do not have the ability to pay for those services. He also taught us that we had a critical part to play in increasing opportunities for diverse, underrepresented groups in the profession. Finally, and most importantly, he inculcated in us a value for a lawyer’s responsibility to family. We were able to observe him as he loved his family and as he spent quality time with them while making a difference in so many different aspects of his life and the life of the citizens of the State of Michigan, and the members of the bar.
He taught us all of these values by example. Each and every day, we were able to watch him as he participated in the bar and through the bench to improve the quality of service in the profession and, at the same time, to produce the highest quality of work within the Court, on time, within the deadlines set by the Court.
My experience with Justice ARCHER and that of my colleagues as law clerks for Justice ARCHER was an exemplary experience and one that I would recommend to any.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: Now, I want to call on the Honorable MYRON WAHLS of the Michigan Court of Appeals.
THE HONORABLE MYRON WAHLS: Good afternoon, justices. There are three basic reasons that bring people together. In larger groups, the three reasons that bring people together are, one, to take note of something that is already happened, either to celebrate it or deplore it, but in any case, to do so en masse. Two, to take note of something that hasn’t happened, either to try to make it happen or to prevent it from happening at all. And, three, to salute someone we hold responsible for any of the above.
And that is the nicest kind of get-together. It is why this occasion today is so special. Celebrating events can be a very joyous time, but it is always even better when we celebrate the people who are responsible for the events.
Today, then, is a doubly gratifying occasion because we are saluting someone as well as something. We are saying, “Thanks” and “Well done,” and “Congratulations.”
Our presence here is the beginning of that salute, and we are here not because we had to come, but because we wanted to come, and we wanted to come because we wanted to be a part of this occasion.
I think success comes in many ways. Perhaps Booker T. Washington was wiser still when he wrote, “Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.”3
Success indeed comes in different forms and in different times for different people, but it is sweetest when it comes with the approval, the applause, the rewards freely given by people, and that is why we are here today.
We recognize that in every field of endeavor, some people are outstanding in their particular work, and some people are outstanding simply as people. Very often, in saluting these outstanding people, we do more than merely honor them, we help them to set standards for emulation.
It has been said that a man is judged by the company he keeps. A person is also judged by the company that keeps him. The best judgment of all is the judgment of one’s peers. The company that has been assembled here does honor by its presence and by its deliberate purpose to honor a person of distinction, a person who has few peers but many admirers, and much to be admired for.
We have a tendency to honor people for doing the seemingly impossible. We have gathered to honor one who has successfully bitten off more than the rest of us could or would chew. Some will say we are honoring accomplishments and others will say that the essential element that we are saluting is sheer bravery above and beyond the call of duty. But in fact, we are not honoring abstract ideas; we are here to express our respect, appreciation, and faith in an outstanding individual.
There are many people who do good deeds, but there are differences in the way the deeds are done. There is, for example, the story of a man who passed a most attractive restaurant, and he walked in and ordered a steak and found the food so marvelous that he returned the next night. He found a cozy table in the back of the restaurant and ordered steak again, but this time the steak was so small and scrawny that he called the waiter. He said, “How come I had such a big steak here last night, and tonight you brought me such a small, scrawny one?” “Simple,” said the waiter, “Last night you were sitting in the front window.”
Some people do good deeds when they are sitting in the front window. Our guest of honor does good deeds out of the spotlight, as well as in front of it, and what you see of his good works is only the front window of his tremendous accomplishments.
It is a pleasure now for me to ask one who has stood up for so many worthy purposes to stand up now for himself and be recognized.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: Let’s take a break from the speeches to recognize a lot of friends of the Archer family, and a lot of friends of ours and public officials who are here. Attorney General Kelley, Bob and Marge Griffin, Chief Judge DOCTOROFF of the Court of Appeals, Judge MURPHY, Judge CLIFF TAYLOR, and Judge WHITE of the Michigan Court of Appeals, Judge Stuart Hoffius from Grand Rapids, and the Honorable Fred Harris.
Now, let me introduce James A. Garner and Warren Garner, the uncles of our honored guest today.
MR. JAMES GARNER: Honorable justices and fellow honorees, and ladies and gentlemen, it’s a great pleasure for me to be able to say a few words on the upbringing of my esteemed and honorable—more so than I had thought—nephew. But since the Mayor was the only child in our immediate family, I knew him in all stages of his growing up, and had, I believe, some input in his progress. You probably know that he grew up in Cassopolis, attended Western Michigan University, became a teacher and a lawyer, and was appointed to the Michigan Supreme Court, was elected Mayor of Detroit. There are other accomplishments, which I don’t know about, and all made us very, very proud.
This, of course, reflects the teaching and the examples that he was exposed to in his formative years. The Christian teaching and the respect for honesty, the will to accomplish, all came from those teachings, and I think have helped to make him the loving, caring person that he is. Dennis has always been a person to plan his activities and then to follow them pretty closely.
When he finished his Western Michigan University schooling, I asked him what he had in mind. He said he had a ten-year plan, and after that ten years, he was going to get married, and he was going to do some other things. So two years later, I received from him an invitation to a wedding. We came and met the lovely person, Trudy, the DunCombes, including Beth, of course, who at that time was just going into school, and Jim and Eleanor DunCombe. And it has been a privilege to know them all. They have been wonderful people.
With all of that, I think the thing I am most proud of is the humility with which Dennis has accepted these things. You see, I call him Dennis, and I have always and will be to him, Uncle Jimmy.
MR. WARREN GARNER: Good afternoon justices, Mayor Archer. The pleasure that I feel today in seeing yet another honor come to my nephew, Mayor Dennis Archer, is shared by all members of our family. The portrait of him that will hang on these walls has caused us to experience a variety of emotions, but there is one emotion that we do not have and could never have. Yes, we are proud, yes, we are very happy, and yes, we are honored. But no, we are not surprised.
We have always expected great things from Dennis. When he was a child, his father and I used to hunt and fish together in the beautiful woods and waters of Southwestern Michigan. Now, in Cassopolis there is often talk about Dennis, especially about how he always tried to do his best at whatever it was that he was doing. That old saying, “Do it well or not at all,” is a phrase that described Dennis as a child, as a teen, and still describes him as an adult.
His father, Ernie Archer, died years ago, but I will always remember how he firmly believed that his son would someday make a mark in this world. Actually, Ernie wanted Dennis to become a doctor, but he fooled him.
His beliefs are shared by Dennis’ mother, his grandmother, his uncles, his aunts, and all his other relatives. So, on behalf of all of Mayor Archer’s family, we thank you for bestowing this honor upon him, and we charge you to take good care of this portrait because we believe that one day, it may hang in the Oval Office, and if it ever hangs there, no, we will not be surprised.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: That’s my idea of a real couple of uncles. You are a lucky, lucky man.
And, now, C. Beth DunCombe will offer some remarks and present the portrait.
MS. C. BETH DUNCOMBE: May it please the Court, I stand before you not only as Justice, now Mayor, Archer’s friend and sister-in-law, but also his former law partner, and now, also, I suppose, one of the confidants for the Mayor and also fund raiser for the Mayor, and I also stand here before you as the chair of the DENNIS W. ARCHER Portrait Committee.
I am sorry that the artist, Paul Collins could not be here today. Paul is in Japan painting, and his biography, a short snapshot of it, is in your program.
For those who would like to see more of Paul’s works, we all have seen the “America at Work” series in the Amway Grand Hotel in Grand Rapids, and that was done by Paul.
Paul is from Grand Rapids, so he is a Michigander.
Paul wrote his perspective of the portrait, and I would like to read this perspective as the Mayor’s son, Dennis W. Archer, Jr., and my parents, Eleanor and James DunCombe, unveil it.
The portrait of the Honorable DENNIS W. ARCHER was painted to hang in the Michigan Supreme Court in which Justice ARCHER served prior to his election as the Mayor of the City of Detroit. It is at once, a celebration of American values and a deserved honor for the labor that the Justice performed while a member of the Court.
For all of you who have known Justice ARCHER, either back in the days of the Charfoos, Christensen and Archer law firm, the days here at the Supreme Court, in the days of Dickinson, Wright, Moon, Van Dusen, and Freeman, or now as the Mayor of the City of Detroit, you will know that there is one picture that follows him wherever he goes. The artist, Paul Collins, did not know that when he captured the HONORABLE DENNIS W. ARCHER and when the justice, now Mayor, saw it, I was there, and he was absolutely shocked and being as all of you know him, he grabbed the artist and started kissing him, and Paul didn’t know what was happening. And so I would ask that Dennis Junior unveil it as I describe what has been described by the artist as a somewhat unconventional portrait.
Most formal portraits use a combination of color and light to accent and draw the viewer’s attention to the visage of the subject. Here, the background highlights the Justice, and the importance of his position on the Court, by recalling segments of the history of the Nation through which he lived and grew. From the time when some of our children were escorted to places of learning by Federal Marshalls, to this day, as Justice ARCHER is being honored, we see in the portrait, our Nation’s resilience, its ability to learn, to heal and to reward competence. Justice ARCHER is an American model—a man of competence and compassion, virtue and vigor, intellectual power and pride. The background of the portrait draws our attention to him, yet calls us to remember what we hope is the past, through which Justice Archer has journeyed.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: The Honorable DENNIS ARCHER.
MAYOR ARCHER: Mr. Chief Justice and colleagues who now sit where I used to, I want to thank you for the opportunity for this special session, and I would like to thank Charles Rutherford as Secretary of the Michigan Supreme Court Historical Society and Thomas G. Kienbaum, who is the President of the State Bar who left Chicago on a charter plane to be here for this special session.
The eloquent words from Judge Anna Diggs Taylor, whose friendship and judicial acumen I admire so much, my former law partner, David Christensen, his dad, and my godson, Matthew Joseph, and my former law clerk, Reginald Turner, who spoke so eloquently, and on behalf of others who were kind enough to work with me.
And, to the Honorable MYRON WAHLS who gave me my first legal job when I was a law student at the Detroit College of Law.
And, to my two uncles, James and Warren Garner, who have been much a part of my life and who represent those who are not here now, my mom and dad, my grandmother, my aunt, and my other uncle, and my other relatives as well.
To my best friend and my sister-in-law, C. Beth DunCombe, and to my son, Dennis Junior, and my mother- and father-in-law, who are like parents, and to my wife, who is not able to be here because she is at home with the flu, and she felt very bad about not being able to be here. It’s the first time we have had some major event in our collective lives when we are not together, but she is still with us in any event.
I want to thank the committee who saw fit to bring about this portrait. I can’t begin to tell you how, sitting as you are today, looking out and thinking about when Mr. Justice OTIS SMITH was here among us and how we were present for his portrait to be hung, how I relished in that delight because I admired him so much.
And to my colleague with whom I had the privilege of serving for a year or so on the Michigan Supreme Court, Mr. Justice ROBERT P. GRIFFIN. I know how you must have felt when you had an opportunity to unveil such a very handsome portrait. I’m proud to have had the opportunity to serve with you.
It’s hard to explain and express my gratitude for what was captured. The print that I have in my office, and I have had with me ever since I saw it, of a Norman Rockwell painting captures what I try to be about, and that is to provide an opportunity for children, an opportunity for education, an opportunity for advancement, an opportunity for a brighter future, an opportunity to bring dignity to the law, and to allow the law itself, to evidence its majesty and to work for all citizens.
I’m a product of all of my past, from my family, from my first legal job with Judge Mike Wahls and Judge Dammon Keith, and Joe Brown, and Judge Baltimore of the 36th District Court, Herman Anderson, and all that they meant to the practice of law and opening up of opportunities for young people like myself who did not have an opportunity to go where I ultimately became a partner before I left to become Mayor of the City of Detroit.
The legal profession is one of the best professions in the world. It gives us an opportunity to represent clients from all walks of life. It allows us the opportunity to come before judges, whether they are on the municipal, district, probate, circuit, Court of Appeals, or our highest Court in the state, or our federal judiciary.
It causes us to recognize that we are but a small part of the human nature, but a very important part because it is we who speak, whether on behalf of our clients before the Court or as you write through the pen after giving solid research and considerations to issues that come before you.
I can’t tell you how pleased I have been in my life to serve on this Court and with my colleagues, with whom I had the pleasure of working. It was a unique opportunity, one in which we had excellent collegiality, and we always worked together for the common good of the people whom we serve, without regard to how we were nominated because the issues never were Republican or Democrat, or Independent; they were decided with respect to what is in the best interest of the people of the State of Michigan and what is the law that we must follow irrespective of our philosophical beliefs or differences.
I can tell you with all candor that I miss the Court. I miss the opportunity for reflection and the opportunity for engaging in discourse about issues of the law and how to settle in on an issue and how to approach it. The collegiality that comes with having others whom you admire and respect, who you can talk through an issue and try to come and rest on it, and even when we had differences that caused us to write a dissent or join a dissent or write a separate concurring opinion, or whatever the case may be, it was done with respect.
I recall being so judicious about not wanting anything to disturb the integrity and the regalness of the Court that when people would ask me my favorite color, I would tell them plaid because I wouldn’t want to make anybody disappointed, and Reggie and I used to joke about how I would proofread Xeroxes just to make sure that everything was okay, and how, if I was asked for my opinion, I could safely and honestly say, “I’m sorry I can’t answer that question because that issue might come before the Court, and therefore, I might have to recuse myself, and that’s not why you elected me because you would want me to weigh in on the issue.”
Now, it seems as the Mayor of the City of Detroit, there is nothing that people do not think I have an opinion about. I’ve always had an opinion. And I’m always called upon to do things on the spur of the moment. While we had time to reflect upon really important issues, many of which I know that you are debating today and will always continue to have before you, I am now awakened during the middle of the night if one of my police officers is shot or a fire fighter has been hurt, or I get called during the day where something is going on in the city, where it affects a family or a child or whatever.
But it is through my service on this Court and working with all of you who remain and my service as a lawyer to the clients and to our state, that I think has best helped me deal with the challenges that I face as Mayor, the desire to listen and to want to learn and to want to be fair, and yet to be an advocate on behalf of the city that I love so much.
While I miss the Court, I would not trade one moment for all the ups and downs that I have experienced as Mayor of the City of Detroit. But it all comes together, and we are a product of our lives.
I wish to thank everybody who put aside their personal and professional responsibilities to come here today, and I thank you very much.
I thank you for your belief in me and for what it is I will attempt to do as long as God gives me breath, and I would hope that you would accept this portrait and that it could be hung with so many great justices who came before me.
CHIEF JUSTICE BRICKLEY: We miss you too, Mr. Mayor, but we are proud of what you are doing every day, continuing your life in public office, giving every ounce of energy, of which you have a lot of to start with, to the serious problems of an urban area, one that is so important to Michigan and so typical of our urban areas around the country.
We got to know you when you were here. In fact, it occurred to me that if there was anything wrong with your tenure, it is that it was too short, for our pleasure at least. The thing that I think, in my mind, and I know the minds of my colleagues as we have talked about your contribution to the Court, is your strength of intellect, your conviction, and your energy—boundless energy.
The loyalty to this institution and your integrity are the things that you stand for, and that we think about when we think about you, and we are glad that you are still with us in the sense that you will always be in love with the law. I know our paths will cross more frequently than they have. We thank all your friends and family who helped us here to receive this wonderful portrait that tells so much about our times and about DENNIS ARCHER that will grace these walls as so many others have before you. So, this is a very important, wonderful day for us and we hope that it has been for you, and we take pleasure in being able to be even more reminded as we look up every once in a while and see you and I’m trying to think what to do in a case and maybe it will help us from time to time.
We thank all of you for making it a good day for us, and we wish you and your family continued success in all your undertakings. We know that you will succeed, thank all of you.
1) Lost Lawyer: Failing Ideals of the Legal Profession (Cambridge, Mass: Belknap Press, 1993).
2) Revolt in the Desert (New York: George H. Doran Company, 1927), ch 19, p 171.
3) Wallis, Charles L., ed., The Treasure Chest (New York: Harper & Row, 1965), p v.