Henry A. Dudley was a well-known and respected citizen of Washington, D. C., and had many friends and admirers in the Roanoke Valley. Henry was born in Altavista and attended Fork Union Military School. After graduation from Roanoke College and the University of Virginia Law School, he practiced law in Roanoke from 1937 to 1942, spending a year as clerk of the Virginia Senate.
Dudley's service to the United States Navy during World War II was distinguished-he participated in three D-Day invasions and received naval decorations for each. After a period as Commissioner of the Foreign Liquidation Commission for China and the Philippines, Dudley returned to private practice with the Washington D.C. law firm of McNutt, Dudley and Easterwood, becoming senior partner in 1955. Dudley then joined the distinguished firm of Glassie, Pewitt, Beebe and Shank in 1979 as Senior Counsel.
Dudley used his considerable business expertise and legal talent for the benefit of the community on many occasions and in 1965, he received the Meritorious Public Service Award from the District of Columbia for his work as chairman of the Civil War Centennial Commission from 1961 to 1965. Dudley was a valuable member of the Board of Directors of many foundations including the National Symphony and the Landon School for Boys in Bethesda, Maryland.
Dudley's sense of responsibility and knowledge of the importance of a quality education guided him into a fruitful relationship with his Alma Mater. Dudley was a faithful member of the Board of Trustees of Roanoke College since 1972. He served as national chairman of a major fundraising campaign for the college, and was a member of the Associates, a primary leadership giving group. Dudley received the Roanoke College Medal in 1976 for his distinctive service to the college and the community, as well as for his professional achievements.
Henry Dudley was married to Lavinia Payne Dudley and together they raised two children; Henry A. Dudley Jr. and Spottswood P. Dudley.