Richard Maxwell

Harry R. Chadwick, Sr. Professor of Law and Director of Continuing Legal Education, 1980-1989, Harry R. Chadwick, Sr. Professor Emeritus of Law, 1989-2016

  • Richard Maxwell

Richard Maxwell joined the Duke Law faculty in 1980.  Maxwell was a preeminent scholar on oil, gas, and mineral law.  For much of his career he was an editor of the Oil and Gas Reporter, and was a member of the Committee on Gas Production of the National Resources Council.  Maxwell also published on the subjects of social legislation and real property security transactions.  He was a visiting professor at several other institutions including the Universities of Minnesota, Singapore, and Colorado and was Fulbright Lecturer at Queen’s University, Belfast.  Among other awards and distinctions Maxwell received honorary degrees from California Western in 1983 and Southwestern University in 1993. 

Maxwell completed a B.S.L. in 1941 and a LL.B. in 1947 at the University of Minnesota.  In the intervening years during World War II he served in the Navy.  Maxwell began his academic career at the University of North Dakota and then taught at the University of Texas.  In 1952-53 he was counsel to the Amerada Petroleum Corporation.  Maxwell joined the law faculty at UCLA in 1953, and served as dean there from 1959 to 1969.  He remained on the UCLA faculty until 1981.  Maxwell was involved in many professional organizations including serving as president of the American Association of Law Schools in 1972.

Maxwell assumed emeritus status in 1989 but continued to teach until 1994.  He died in Austin, Texas, on his 97th birthday, October 7, 2016.

Duke University, School of Law, Bulletin of Duke University School of Law [serial]

Professor Emeritus Maxwell dies at 97