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On the passing of Evelyn Buggs, an ideal public servant

Evelyn Buggs, a longtime member of the staff of the Office of the Solicitor General, passed away today.  Here are the thoughts of several attorneys with whom she worked.

Chief Justice John Roberts, who served as Principal Deputy Solicitor General:

I was saddened to learn of Evelyn’s passing. She was my secretary when I worked in the Solicitor General’s Office, and she worked faithfully and tirelessly to serve the Department she cherished and the country she loved.

Associate Justice Elena Kagan, who served as Solicitor General:

Evelyn Buggs was a true public servant. In her kind, unassuming way, she was the glue that held the Solicitor General’s Office together. She never wanted any praise or recognition, yet she was always there when you needed something, always working behind the scenes, always helping someone. That was Evelyn’s gift to all of us—quietly keeping everything running smoothly, year after year. As so many others who have worked in the Solicitor General’s Office, I consider myself lucky to have known and worked with Evelyn. She will be deeply missed.

Solicitor General Donald Verrilli:

The Office of the Solicitor General has lost a treasured colleague and friend.  Our dear Evelyn Buggs has passed away, after a long illness.  Evelyn served in the Office for more than two decades.  No one was more devoted to the mission of the Office, and no one has contributed more over the years to its successful functioning.   Evelyn knew for some time that she would not survive her illness.  She asked that she be able to leave the Office as she entered it — quietly and without fanfare, focused on each day’s responsibilities, until she could work no more.  She stayed at her post until just ten days ago.  Her dedication, and the warmth of her smile, never flagged.  The dignity and courage she showed these past few months will be a continuing inspiration to all of us who were privileged to work with her during that time.

Former Solicitor General Gregory Garre:

Evelyn’s passing is an enormous loss for the Office of the Solicitor General, and a personal tragedy for all of us who were blessed to have known her and worked with her.  Evelyn was not only a great asset to the Office of the Solicitor General and Department of Justice whose excellent work was indispensable to the ability of the Office to function and meets its many demands.  But she exuded a calmness, strength, and positive attitude that rubbed off everyone around her.

Every day — for decades — she came to work at the Office of the Solicitor General and, with a quiet force, made those around her better public servants and better people just by the example she set.

It is difficult to think of the Office without her, and her warm smile.  I will always be grateful to her for her kindness, dedication, and friendship.

Former Solicitor General Paul Clement:

Evelyn Buggs was the very model of a public servant. She was professional and dedicated to the work of the office beyond measure and was a source of strength and inspiration to her colleagues.  She will be greatly missed.

Former Solicitor General Seth Waxman:

Evelyn Buggs was among the gentlest and kindest people I’ve ever had the privilege to know. I hope her memory will be a blessing for the many colleagues whose lives she touched so sweetly.

Former Acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal:

Evelyn was, without a doubt, the most selfless colleague with whom I have ever worked.  Never once did I hear “I need X, or I need Y.”  Instead it was always — at every turn — about the good of the Office.  Even when she was deeply ill, she made the long commute from Baltimore to OSG every day, which had to be physically demanding in ways few of us can understand. She was classy, quietly capable, and much beloved.

Recommended Citation: Tom Goldstein, On the passing of Evelyn Buggs, an ideal public servant, SCOTUSblog (May. 23, 2013, 8:01 PM),