Pierce Atwood Attorney Wilfred L. “Jack” Sanders, Jr. Retires After Practicing in New Hampshire for 56 Years

PORTSMOUTH, NH – April 9, 2018: Pierce Atwood LLP today announced that long-time New Hampshire attorney Jack Sanders has retired from the firm. Jack’s retirement brings to a close a remarkable and long-standing career of legal, civic, and public service in the state of New Hampshire.

Upon graduation from Boston College Law School in 1962, Jack joined the late Chief Justice Richard P. Dunfey in Hampton, NH. The firm became known as Dunfey & Sanders until 1965 when Dunfey was appointed to the Superior Court Bench. Later that year, Jack was joined by Ed McDermott, and for nearly 40 years their firm was known as Sanders & McDermott. In 2003, their firm merged with Pierce Atwood.

In addition to his practice advising banks, professional individuals and associations, and family and closely held businesses on a wide range of transactions and governance issues, Jack’s many years of experience in government relations and administrative law helped him assist clients in dealing with state agencies in order to solve their problems affecting their businesses, making him a valuable firm resource.

When Jack wasn’t managing the day-to-day demands of a busy legal practice and full roster of clients, he was deeply involved in a wide range of activities in the legal community. At a time when there were impeachments filed against judges in the NH Supreme Court, Jack was asked to form a committee to study the judicial conduct process and appointment procedures. The court ended up adopting and implementing all of the committee’s recommendations. He then served for 15 years as a member of the Judicial Conduct Committee, many of them as vice chair. He also served on the New Hampshire Legislative Ethics Committee, and was former director of the American Judicature Society. Jack served as vice chair of Governor Sununu’s Judicial Selection Commission and previously served on Governor Hassan’s Judicial Selection Commission.

In 2017, Jack was named an Honorary Fellow of the New Hampshire Bar Foundation, where he was recognized for his volunteer work focusing on “upholding high standards for the legal profession and the judiciary, as well as a long-standing commitment to equal access to justice.” Jack was recently Chair of the Leadership Council of the Campaign for Legal Services, is a Life Fellow of the NH Bar Foundation, and since 2010, has been included in the lawyer rankings publication “Best Lawyers in America” for Corporate Law.

Jack’s professional and civic activities extended beyond the legal community. He was a trustee, legal advisor, and vice chairman of the Board of Trustees of the University System of New Hampshire, treasurer of the US Skiing Foundation, Chair of the Freestyle National Teams Committee, and served in leadership roles for many charitable and business organizations, including Child & Family Services, Hampton Jaycees, and Hampton Rotary Club. He was an advisor to several New Hampshire governors and heads of state agencies, did advance work for Robert Kennedy’s presidential campaign, and later served as New Hampshire Co-chair of Ted Kennedy’s run for president.

In 2017, Jack received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the University of New Hampshire Center for Family Business, and was former Chair of its Advisory Committee. He was also a Family Business lecturer at UNH, and a lecturer at Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.

Pierce Atwood Managing Partner David E. Barry stated, “Jack’s standing within the New Hampshire legal community is second-to-none. His ability to balance the requirements of a vibrant, demanding practice with his extraordinary level of community engagement is an example to all of us at Pierce Atwood. Jack’s lifelong commitment to equal access to justice and his willingness to serve in leadership positions for so many civic and professional organizations is admirable and remarkable. On behalf of Pierce Atwood attorneys and staff, we wish Jack the very best.”