Recently retired Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff is now semi-retired.

On Friday, St. Mary’s University and UTSA announced the longtime public servant would be sharing his knowledge of government, politics and the law at the two institutions.

At St. Mary’s University, Wolff will lecture undergraduate, graduate and law classes as a University Distinguished Service Professor, the school announced.

“Without question, Nelson Wolff is one of St. Mary’s most distinguished graduates, whose leadership has brought enduring benefit to the citizens of Bexar County,” said St. Mary’s University President Thomas Mengler. “As University Distinguished Service Professor, Judge Wolff will impart to hundreds of St. Mary’s University students the gentle art of drawing people together to find common ground, common goals and common good.”

Wolff will lead civic engagement discussions and hold public conversations for students as well as community members about “finding common ground for the common good at a time when our citizenry needs it most,” the university stated in a press release.

His appointment began Jan. 1. In addition to lecturing, Wolff will work with Executive Vice President and Provost Corey Cook and deans across campus to engage students in meaningful and transformative ways.

“I am delighted that St. Mary’s has welcomed me back home to help in whatever way I can to prepare the next generation of St. Mary’s leaders,” Wolff said.

Beginning this spring, Wolff joins UTSA in a non-faculty role. According to a press release, he will share his knowledge of government and politics with students, faculty and researchers across a variety of academic programs.

“Nelson’s career as a public servant is legendary, and how he shares his perspectives, insights and wisdom with those interested in public service will be very special,” UTSA President Taylor Eighmy said in a statement. “We are delighted about our collaborations with Nelson in this next phase of his remarkable career.”

Wolff ‘s role at UTSA includes serving as an advisor to the UTSA College for Health, Community and Policy Dean’s Community Lecture series and collaborating with the UTSA Najim Center for Innovation and Career Advancement on guest speakers and mentors for the Career-Engaged Learning programs.

“After 50 years in public service, I look forward to working with the students, faculty and the leadership at UTSA, sharing what I have learned in my public career and assisting UTSA as it continues to grow as an outstanding Tier One university,” Wolff said in a statement.

Wolff, who served as a state representative, state senator, city councilmember, mayor and county judge, earned a bachelor of business administration degree and a juris doctor in 1966 at St. Mary’s and has been honored in multiple ways.

The University Alumni Association presented Wolff with its Distinguished Alumnus of the Year award in 1996, and the Law Alumni Association honored him with its Distinguished Law Graduate award in 2001.

In 2011, the early law admission program was renamed the Nelson Wolff Law Early Admission Program. It allows qualified St. Mary’s undergraduate students to earn a bachelor’s degree and a law degree from the St. Mary’s School of Law more quickly than usual.

Avatar photo

Tracy Idell Hamilton

Tracy Idell Hamilton is Story Editor for the San Antonio Report.