Philip Henderson Henderson Hoff Edit Profile
Bachelor of Arts, Williams College, 1948. Bachelor of Laws, Cornell Law School, 1951. Honorary degrees, American International College, U. Vermont, Middlebury College, Windham College, Norwich U., Williams College, Vermont Law School Association Black & Wilson, Burlington, Vermont, 1951-1954.
Partner Black, Wilson, Coffrin & Hoff, Burlington, 1955-1962. Member Vermont General Assembly, Montpelier, 1961. Governor State of Vermont, 1963-1969.
Partner Hoff, Wilson, Powell & Lang, Burlington, 1969-1989. Member Vermont Senate, 1984-1990. Chairman United States Civil Rights Committee, Vermont, New England Natural Resources Committee, Vermont Supreme Court Advisory Committee.
Member standing advising committee Vermont Supreme Court. Member Commision on Civil Rights. Member Friends of Health Care.
Of counsel Hoff, Curtis, Pacht, Cassidy & Frame, Burlington, 1989. Co-chair, member New England Governor's Conference, 1967-1969. Chairman Vermont Democratic Committee, 1974-1975, advising committee on Vermont bar admissionrequirements, Vermont Senate Committee on Education.
Trustee Vermont Law School, past president of the board. Member, past chair New England Natural Resources Committee. Board directors Law Conservation Foundation, New England Environmental Policy Center.
At the time of his election, he was the first Democrat elected governor of Vermont in 108 years. He saw combat action during World War II aboard the submarine, USS Sea Dog, in the South Pacific theatre. At the time, she was a student at Connecticut College.
The Hoffs moved to Burlington, Vermont in 1951. Hoff was elected to the Vermont House of Representatives in 1960, and in 1962, was elected Vermont's first Democratic governor since 1854 by virtue of his energetic campaign and the popularity of President John F. Kennedy. He was reelected in 1964 and 1966 and pioneered unprecedented environmental, development, and social welfare programs, including the creation of the Governor's Commission on the Status of Women.
Concerned about racial justice, he joined with New York Mayor John Lindsay to co-found the Vermont-New York Youth Project, which brought minority students from the city together with Vermont students to work on joint summer projects at several Vermont colleges. According to the Boston Globe, the program, which temporarily doubled Vermont's black population, "uncovered some latent bigotry that had not been visible before."
Hoff was the first Democratic Governor in the nation to split with President Lyndon Johnson over the Vietnam War and later campaigned across the country to promote Robert Kennedy's effort to obtain the 1968 Democratic presidential nomination. After Kennedy's assassination, Hoff endorsed Eugene McCarthy.
Democrats who opposed Johnson came close to nominating Hoff as a candidate for Vice President at the 1968 Democratic National Convention, but after some initial enthusiasm, Hoff declined to put his name forward. Hoff's endorsement of Kennedy and later McCarthy upset conservative Democrats and Hoff was also criticized for increases in state spending which some claimed led to hefty deficits. In 1970, Hoff challenged incumbent Senator Winston L. Prouty for a Vermont seat in the United States Senate, but was handily defeated.
During the campaign, Hoff announced that he had battled alcoholism in the past. Some attribute his defeat to his opposition to the Vietnam War and his efforts to promote racial justice. In the 1980s he returned to elective politics, serving three terms in the Vermont State Senate (1983-1989).
He has also served in various advisory and honorary positions and as President of the Board of Trustees at Vermont Law School as well as continuing his work as a lawyer in private practice. In 1989, he co-founded his current law firm, Hoff, Curtis. In 2012, Castleton State College named its newest residence hall after Hoff, the first building to be named in his honor.
Co-chair, member New England Governor's Conference, 1967-1969. Chairman Vermont Democratic Committee, 1974-1975, advisory committee on Vermont bar admission requirements, Vermont Senate Committee on Education. Trustee Williams College, 1965-1970, Vermont Law School, 1983-1998, president 1990-1995.
Fellow Harvard University, 1971-1972. Member, past chair New England Natural Resources Committee. Board directors Law Conservation Foundation, New England Environmental Policy Center.
Member American Bar Association, Vermont Bar Association, Chittenden County Bar Association, United Service Organization (honorary), Grange, Young Men’s Christian Association.
Married Joan Brower, August 28, 1948. Children: Susan Brower, Dagny Elizabeth, Andrea Clark, Gretchen Henderson.
1951 - 1954
1955 - 1962
1961 - 1962
1963 - 1969
1969 - 1989
1984 - 1990