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    04.26.19 Professor of Law Emeritus Joseph “Joe” Crea ’47 Turns 104
    Professor of Law Emeritus Joseph “Joe” Crea ’47 Turns 104

    Professor of Law Emeritus Joe Crea ‘47, a much beloved faculty member and alumnus, turned 104 on April 26. Crea’s teaching career at the Law School spanned more than six decades, and he taught as recently as 2014.

    “Joe Crea is the heart of the Law School,” said Interim Dean Maryellen Fullerton. “He has always loved teaching, and he has always put the institution first. A member of the ‘old guard,’ he welcomed me and the new generation of faculty members in the 1980s with open arms. He showed us how thrilling it is to teach and inspire law students. He lobbied the administration for support for research and scholarship, and he demonstrated the rich connections that sustain faculty and alumni over the years. With all my heart, I salute Joe Crea on his 104th birthday.”

    Crea has had a powerful impact on the lives and careers of generations of students. Allen J. Grubman ’67, senior partner, Grubman Shire Meiselas & Sacks, credited Crea with saving his law school career and putting him on the path to success. “I wouldn’t be here—I don’t know where I would be—if not for Brooklyn Law School and Joe Crea,” he said in his remarks at the annual Alumni Association Luncheon in 2018, where Grubman was honored. He said Crea helped him to pass—just barely—his torts class, which enabled him to stay in law school, ultimately graduate, and go on to become one of the most powerful entertainment lawyers in the business.

    In recognition of his numerous contributions to the Brooklyn Law School community, in 1998 the Joseph Crea Dean chair was established in his name. In 2015, Crea was one of the honorees celebrated at the Salute to Brooklyn Law School Icons Gala. Among Crea’s many professional achievements are authoring A Guide to Legal Research, serving on a Mayor’s Committee for the Selection of Marshals, and serving as judge advocate for a veterans’ group. He has also been honored with a Distinguished Achievement Award by his alma mater, Brooklyn College.

    Before joining the faculty in 1947, he worked as a librarian at the Law School. He also served in the U.S. Army during World War II. Professor Crea's life and career were the subject of a feature article in the summer 1998 issue of Brooklyn Law Notes.

    Many alumni and faculty fondly recall Crea’s pithy words of wisdom, known as “Crea-isms.” Noteworthy favorites include: “Never drop your briefcase and run!”; “Let the marbles roll!”; and “Do a mitzvah every day—but don’t get caught at it!”