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Harry Krause

1932 - 2018
Max L. Rowe Professor Emeritus

Harry D. Krause joined the University of Illinois Law Faculty in 1963 as an Assistant Professor and rose to become the Max. L Rowe Professor of Law at the College of Law where he continued teaching until 2007.  Before joining the academy, Professor Krause practiced tax law with Covington & Burling and international business law with Ford Motor Co. 

During his still active career, Prof. Krause served as U.S. State Department delegate to The Hague Conference on Private International Law developing the Treaty on International Adoptions. As a Commissioner on Uniform State Laws, he served as Reporter for the Uniform Parentage Act and the Uniform Putative Fathers Act. As a member of the Academie Internationale de Droit Compare, he served as rapporteur on U.S. Law at Congresses all over the world. Professor Krause was appointed an Illinois Commissioner on Uniform Laws and is a life member of the American Law Institute. Professor Krause served as the Vice President of the International Society of Family Law and on ISFL’s Executive Council for over 2 decades. Professor Krause received the Alexander von Humboldt Research Prize in 1992. Professor Krause’s academic work lead to the recognition that non-marital children cannot be denied rights extended to other children, in Levy vs. Louisiana, 391 US 68 (1968).

In honor of Professor Krause’s lifelong passion for mentoring emerging scholars in family law, the Family Law & Policy Program regularly hosts the Harry Krause Emerging Scholars Workshop to hone ideas and provide a platform for promising family law academics looking to break through.

reflections on Professor Krause's contributions


Harry Krause

"Harry Krause was a giant in the field of family law and will be sorely missed.  Professor Krause's work as a reporter for the Uniform Parentage Act and the Uniform Putative Fathers Act left a distinct imprint on the law, especially when it comes to non-marital fathers and non-marital families.  I can think of no single academic who did more to bring respect and meaningful inclusion of non-marital children into the full panoply of legal rights for children, so that nonmarital children cannot be denied rights extended to maritalchildren. Perhaps as profound and lasting an impact, Harry Krause served as a wonderful mentor to new faculty in the field, both in the United States and far beyond.  It is no surprise that the Harry Krause Emerging Scholars Workshop established by the Family Law & Policy Program has become the forum for newer faculty to hone their scholarship and own voices as scholars.  Harry’s legacy is experiencing a renaissance as newer scholars rediscover Harry’s work and all the insights it offers for the challenges facing families today. "

--Robin Fretwell Wilson



"The impact of Harry Krause’s scholarship on family law is a testament to his life’s work. But, his reputation for mentoring up-and-coming academics is equally well-known. That commitment to budding academics lives on through the Harry Krause Emerging Scholars program. Through the program, young family law scholars can be recognized for their work and build vital connections with leaders in the field. I am grateful for that opportunity as a 2016 participant in the program and will honor Harry Krause’s legacy by paying that generosity forward to future aspiring family law scholars."

—Anthony Michael Kreis, J.D., Ph.D.
Visiting Assistant Professor of Law
Chicago-Kent College of Law



“What a huge loss – for Illinois, for family law, and for so many of us who benefitted from his inspiration and mentorship.  He truly was a giant.”

—David Meyer
Dean, Tulane University Law School
New Orleans, Louisiana



"I have many fond memories of Harry. I remember as a young member of the faculty I’d often get in what I thought was 'early' (for example, 7:15 am) and stop by the faculty lounge to get some much-needed coffee, and Harry often would be there with Wayne and a couple others. I’d make some comment that they were there early, too, to which Harry pointed out this was their mid-morning break! Harry had a great dry wit … he was a great raconteur."

—Charles Tabb
Mildred Van Voorhis Jones Chair in Law



"I know that there is (and long has been) a product on the market called Coffee-Mate, but for me over a good number of years my regular coffee-mate was Harry Krause. Our joint partaking of the brew commenced soon after his arrival at Illinois in 1963 (two years following my appearance here), and continued on until his relocation away from Champaign-Urbana in more recent years. 

This activity usually occurred within whatever area was designated as the 'faculty lounge,' which ranged from a space more like a closet to the impressive facility we now have. In the earlier years, the two of us were part of a crowd, for then (unlike now) it was common for somewhere between five and eight faculty members to be in the building and ready for a break by 7 a.m.! When we both reached the age of statutory senility, more often than not it would be just the two of us, and not necessarily so early. 

Coffee with Harry was always a delight, as he was full of opinions about the news of the day, some of which I even agreed with! Harry always had the upper hand in those discussions, however, as he (unlike me) always consumed the New York Times at breakfast, so he was 'armed and loaded' by the time we got together. I fondly recall those discussions about politics, world affairs, and the like. Yet what I found most interesting of all was Harry’s occasional reminiscences concerning what it had been like growing up in Berlin during World War Two, an intense experience that understandably remained very much a part of him."

—Wayne LaFave
David C. Baum Professor of Law Emeritus



"I was privileged to have been a student in Professor Krause’s Torts class in 1970 and Family Law class in 1971 at the University Of Illinois College Of Law.  All of the students knew of his expertise and national reputation in the field of family law, so his knowledge of the subject area was understood by all.  What most impressed me was his control and management of the class.  I never saw him embarrass or belittle a student.  When he asked a student a question and they did not know the answer, he simply moved on to another student in a very firm but professional fashion.  Professor Krause also had the perfect balance of the Socratic Method and the traditional college lecture approach, something greatly appreciated by a beginning law student not used to a complete question and answer environment.  His vocabulary and oral lecture skills were exemplary.  He was also very open to questions and accessible to students after class. Indeed, my interest in family law originated in his classroom in 1971 and came to fruition when I took over the Champaign County Family Law division as a Circuit Judge in 2000.  His contributions to the teaching profession and his research and publications in the area of family law will be greatly missed. Professor Krause touched many lives, and I was fortunate to be one of them."

—Judge Arnold Blockman (Ret.),

Adjunct Professor, University of Illinois College of Law



“Professor Harry Krause is an outstanding contemporary American family law scholar. His English book FAMILY LAW IN A NUTSHELL (fifth edition, 2007) was translated by me with other Chinese scholars and published in China by the Press of China Political Science and Law University in March 2010. The translation is a good study reference book of American family law and its major changes in recent years for teachers and students of law schools of universities and researchers from research institutes in China. On behalf of Chinese family law scholars, I would like to express our deep condolences on the death of Professor Harry Krause!”

—Chen Wei, Family Professor,
Southwest University of Political Science and Law, Chongqing, China



"This is very sad news for the ISFL and for all those who are interested in Family Law. Professor Krause's impact had been immense.” 

—Hugues Fulchiron, President, International Society Family Law



“It is very sad to hear that Professor Harry Krause has passed away. This is undoubtedly a huge loss for the family law field.

The outstanding academic contributions of Professor Harry Krause has a great impact on China. Professor Harry Krause is the most well-known American scholar to Chinese family law scholars and students. His English book FAMILY LAW IN A NUTSHELL (third edition) has attracted wide attention in China since it was translated into Chinese by Professor Chen Wei. Chinese readers and students give the book an unparalleled evaluation with the highest citation rate. In view of this, the fifth edition of the book was translated and published by Professor Chen Wei in 2010, giving readers a more comprehensive understanding of the latest legislative trends and judicial practice of American family law. Since then, this book has always been required reading in the field of Chinese family law.

I collected this book when I was a doctoral candidate student. And, the cite rate of this book has been ranked top in China until now. I have recommend this book to my masters students and doctoral students as a required reference book. It will be seen from this that the book's role in the understanding of American family law and the study of Chinese family law for Chinese scholars is extraordinary..”

—Xia (Lisa) Li, Professor of  Law, 

East China University of Political Science and Law

Director, Center of Family Law and Feminism Legal Theory

Guest Researcher, Emory Law School, U.S, Editor-in-Chief,  Elder Law 



“I didn’t know him personally but learned about his work through this great workshop. The opportunity to engage in the workshop in a field he really shaped has been one of my best experiences at law school. I’m sure his work will continue to inspire generations of students and lawyers.”

—Yotam Zeira, 2015 Harry Krause Emerging Scholar, LLM, Harvard Law School