As Kent Law School approaches its 50th anniversary year it was a delight to welcome back alumnus and New York Attorney at Law John Moore who, together with his wife Keitha, is celebrating his own 50th anniversary!
John and Keitha were married 50 years ago in London and had returned to the UK this month for a celebratory holiday. During their stay, they also made an impromptu visit to Kent, from where John graduated in 1976.
As they toured the Law School’s new £5m Wigoder Law Building and explored the new premises for Kent Law Clinic, John was particularly interested to see the memorial plaque honouring founding Law Clinic Director, Adrian Taylor. Adrian was one of the lecturers John particularly remembered during his studies at Kent, along with Professor Richard de Friend (who taught John contract law), Emeritus Professor Steve Uglow (who taught John criminal law) and Emeritus Professor Wade Mansell (who was John’s tutor).
John revealed he had no intention of becoming a lawyer when he first arrived at Kent in 1973 to study Sociology and Politics. He says he ‘bumped into law’ after transferring out of a module on economic and social history: ‘Law turned out to be exactly what I really needed in terms of having a different outlook – it was like a mental liberation to me. I was able to think more. Good things happened to me at Kent.’
After graduating, John still had no intention of practicing law and worked as a housing coordinator in London before eventually emigrating to New York in 1980. Initially, John worked as a sales manager for Macy’s Department Store and taught social history at Prospect Heights High School in Brooklyn. But after realising his true calling, he completed an additional year of study at Brooklyn Law School and passed the New York State Bar Exam in 1989. He has been a lawyer in the US for almost 30 years representing clients in a variety of legal matters and, in 2012, fulfilled a long-term goal by being admitted to the Bar in Barbados.
It was in Barbados, where John grew up, that he first met his wife Keitha. They now have two sons, one of whom is an Attorney at Law in San Francisco and the other of whom is a Minister of Religion.
You can learn more about John’s legal career in the US, his time at Kent and his advice for aspiring lawyers on his alumni profile on our website.