Wilkes University

About the Honorable Max Rosenn (1910-2006)

The Honorable Max Rosenn, Senior Judge
United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

Judge Max Rosenn’s long career as a public servant spanned many fields, including law, philanthropy, public welfare, health and religion. He made innumerable contributions to the enhancement of northeastern Pennsylvania, to state government, and to the federal judiciary. Following the Hurricane Agnes Disaster of 1972, he played a vital role in the rehabilitation of Greater Wilkes-Barre and its many neighboring communities as chairman of the Flood Recovery Task Force for Wyoming Valley.

After receiving an undergraduate degree from Cornell University and a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania, Judge Rosenn commenced his legal career. He interrupted that career to enter military service in World War II. After several years in the South Pacific, he returned to his wife and sons and resumed the practice of law. He entered state government in 1966 as secretary of public welfare for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. As secretary, Judge Rosenn also served as a member of the cabinet of Governor William W. Scranton and in the cabinet of his successor, Raymond Shafer, and as chairman of the Governor’s Council for Human Services. Following his resignation as Secretary and resumption of the practice of law, he served as chairman of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and chairman of the Legislative Executive Task Force to Restructure Human Services for Pennsylvania. He also served as a member of the 1968 Governor’s Commission to Revise the Public Employee Laws of Pennsylvania. President Nixon appointed him to the United States Court of Appeals in 1970.

He and wife, Tillie, were lifetime residents of the Wyoming Valley, have two sons, Professor Keith and Dr. Daniel, and six grandchildren.

In recognition of his exceptional contributions and his warm relationship with them, Judge Rosenn’s former law clerks and former law firm Rosenn, Jenkins & Greenwald, with the assistance of his family and friends, established in 1980 the Max Rosenn Lecture Series in Law and Humanities.