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Woolf, Sir Harry, Baron

WOOLF, SIR HARRY, BARON (1933– ), British judge. Born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, the son of a builder and architect who later moved to Scotland, and was educated at Fettes, a leading Scottish public school, and London University, Woolf was a barrister before being appointed a High Court judge in 1979, serving until 1985 when he began an impressive rise up the ranks of the British judiciary. He served as a lord justice in 1985–95, a lord of appeal in ordinary with a seat in the House of Lords in 1992–96, master of the rolls in 1996–2000, and lord chief justice from 2000. He is known for his often controversial decisions, generally in the direction of insisting on the welfare of prisoners. Woolf was president of the International Jewish Lawyers' Association from 1993. He was knighted in 1979 and made a life peer in 1992.

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.