Charles Mindel, founded law firm

January 12, 1993|By Staff Report

Charles Mindel, founder of a Baltimore-area law firm and former president of the city bar association and the Jewish Community Center, died yesterday at Sinai Hospital from an apparent stroke.

Mr. Mindel, who was 85 and lived on Park Heights Avenue in Northwest Baltimore, remained active until his death in the law firm of White, Mindel, Clarke & Foard, which has offices in Towson and the city. He had driven to and from work in Towson, as was his daily custom, on Friday.

Born in Baltimore, the son of a Lithuanian Jewish immigrant jeweler, Mr. Mindel adhered to his family's emphasis on the importance of education.

He was a 1924 graduate of City College, where he excelled in track and set a high-jump record that his family said stood for decades. He won a scholarship to attend Johns Hopkins University, receiving his undergraduate degree there in 1927.

After receiving his law degree from the University of Maryland in 1931, Mr. Mindel initially practiced his profession only part-time. His full-time job until 1941 was teaching history at Polytechnic Institute.

He worked briefly during World War II on the legal staff of the federal Office of Price Administration, and in 1943 was named an assistant United States attorney in Baltimore. He resigned after nine months to join the law firm of Weinberg & Green.

Mr. Mindel left in 1950 to help form the Baltimore law firm of Buckmaster, White, Mindel & Clarke -- now known as White, Mindel, Clarke & Foard. He specialized in estate law.

Mr. Mindel was president of the Baltimore Bar Association from 1967 to 1968, and of the JCC from 1958 to 1961 -- a period in which it followed the city's Jewish migration to northwest neighborhoods by moving from a downtown site at 305 W. Monument St. to a new building on spacious grounds at 5700 Park Heights Ave.

In the late 1980s, Mr. Mindel was a member and vice chairman of the state's community colleges board. He was a former vice president of the state bar association, a member of the taxation section of the American Bar Association, and a member of the old Maryland Constitutional Convention Commission.

He had been a member of the regional board of the National Conference of Christians and Jews; president from 1956 to 1958 of the Menorah Lodge of B'nai B'rith; a longtime member of Baltimore Hebrew Congregation; and a former board member of The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore, to which the family suggested memorial donations.

Services were scheduled for 2 p.m. today at Sol. Levinson & Bros., 6010 Reisterstown Road.

Mr. Mindel and his first wife, the former Jeanette Shochet, lived for many years on Uffington Road in Mount Washington. She died in 1972.

Surviving are his wife of 17 years, the former Anne Gamerman; two daughters, Joyce Hankin of Pikesville and Cynthia Auerbach of Fairhaven, N.J.; a son, Iver Mindel of Cockeysville; eight grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

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