Henry A. Hill Jr. '61

Deceased June 17, 2005

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In Memory


Henry was born December 14, 1939, in Athens, Greece, where his father was head of the European division of American Express.  After living in Paris for many years, he did his college preparatory work in the United States, at St. George’s School in Newport, Rhode Island.  Interests at Amherst included membership in DU, sailing and The Student. 

After Amherst he spent a short time as a newspaper reporter, and an even shorter time, as he described it, in the Army reserve.  He went on to law school at Stanford, which he enjoyed greatly as a contrast both climatically and socially to having spent eight years in all-male institutions,  mostly in New England. 

Returning east after graduating in 1965, he arrived in Princeton with “two motorcycles, a dog, a job at a law firm, and a determination to continue the pursuit of newly discovered delights.”  The latter included flying.  “I acquired a pilot’s license in 1967 and a series of single engine airplanes over the subsequent years.”   His early legal career focused on representation of municipalities and planning boards combined with defending prisoners’ rights.  His delightful flights, recreational or otherwise, took him to places as varied as Maine, the Bahamas, Montana, and California, where in 1983, Henry met and married Debbie, who accompanied him back to New Jersey.  Their son, Caleb, was born there the following year.

Henry was a founding partner in 1980 of the law firm now known as Hill Wallack LLP, which has grown to include fifty-five lawyers.  He served on its management committee and chaired the Land Use Group, widely regarded as the foremost land use law practitioners in the Garden State. 

In the early 1970s he had devised a legal strategy that argued that exclusionary zoning discriminated against the poor.  Success with that argument led to the construction of a massive development including hundreds of low- and moderate-income families.  Dozens of suits on behalf of developers against exclusionary zoning statutes followed, allowing scores of projects and making Henry one of New Jersey’s most renowned legal scholars in this area of land use law.

Henry previously served as an adjunct professor of law at Rutgers School of Law—Newark, member and chairman of the New Jersey Advisory Council on Corrections, and chairman of both the land use law section of the New Jersey State Bar Association.  Henry passed away on June 17, 2005, at home in Hillsborough, NJ, after a months-long battle with cancer, with his second wife, Nancy Newcomb Hill, at his side.  Colleagues and adversaries alike crowded the funeral, demonstrating the respect Henry enjoyed from everyone.

James W. Greene '61