Two generations ‘Love’ RC

Judge Thomas J. Love ’75 and sons have made Roanoke College a family tradition

Throughout his impressive career, Judge Thomas J. Love '75 has worn a variety of hats - but it's the one with the RC lacrosse logo that has elevated him to real celebrity status.

Love, who was recently appointed administrative judge of Prince George's County, Maryland, is father of two Roanoke lacrosse players, Ben '06 and Sam '09.

"We all just love Roanoke College," he explains.

When Love was a senior at Parkdale High School in Riverdale, Maryland, a guidance counselor advised him to check out Roanoke College. Satisfied with the school's top-notch academic reputation, he contacted the track coach to see if he would have a chance to make that team. Hearing that his participation was assured, he applied and was accepted. His first sight of the campus came on move-in day.

"I was always goal-oriented," he says, and he knew even then that he would attend law school. During his senior year, though, an internship on Capitol Hill arranged by Professor C. William Hill, Jr. gave him a taste for politics.

To support himself at George Mason University School of Law, Love was a substitute teacher at his former high school and worked construction. Receiving his J.D. in 1981, he began practice in litigation and personal injury, spending much time in court. From 1997 to 2007 he served as an associate judge for Prince George's County and in June 2007 was named administrative judge, responsible for administration of the court, supervision of all judges, officers, and employees, and management of the trial calendar and budget for one of Maryland's busiest District Court dockets.

Love also revived his interest in politics. From 1982 to 1997, he was elected to the Town Council of Berwyn Heights, where he has lived since age 6. "It made for long days," he says. "I was coming home from my law practice and heading to Town Hall for a council meeting." Then, he served as mayor from 1992 to 1997 and admits, "It's cool having been mayor of the town I grew up in."

His many commitments kept Love away from his alma mater until 1999, when he attended his first Alumni Weekend. Describing it as "like old home week," he has not missed one since.

Several colleges sought both of Love's sons for their lacrosse teams, but a single recruiting visit convinced his older son, Ben, to make Roanoke College a family tradition. After playing for the College for four years, Ben now is a graduate student and assistant lacrosse coach for Queens University of Charlotte. Initially, son Sam was the non-conformist; however, after a year at Salisbury University, he decided to transfer to Roanoke and to play lacrosse, too. "I think it's very special that my father, my brother, and I are all a part of Roanoke College," Sam explains. "Not many people can say that."

Now, each spring Love spends much of his vacation time in the Donald J. Kerr Stadium, cheering on a son. "The parents of other players come here and are so impressed with this beautiful campus. Then they look at me-not only have I had two children here, but I went here as well," he says. "They see my continuing connection to Roanoke as a wonderful thing." - Jennifer O. Rosti

Released: October 21, 2008