Patrick Brett O'Sullivan


Patrick Brett O'Sullivan was the son of Derby's first mayor Dr. Thomas Jefferson O'Sullivan.  P.B. was born in Derby on August 11, 1887 and he attended the public schools before going on to graduate from Yale University in 1908. He also earned advanced degrees from Georgetown University in 1909, and Yale Law School in 1913. He was admitted to the Connecticut bar in 1913 and commenced practice in Derby. He served as corporation counsel of Derby from 1914 to 1917. Active in local and state politics, he was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1916. He served in the State senate and was its minority leader in 1917.

In 1918, during the First World War, he resigned from the state senate to enlist in the United States Navy. Following the war, he was elected as a Democrat to the United States House of Representatives for the Sixty-eighth Congress (March 4, 1923-March 3, 1925). He lost a reelection bid in 1924 and resumed the practice of law and also became an associate professor of law at the Yale Law School

From 1931-1950 he served as a judge of the Connecticut Superior Court. In the years from 1950 to 1957, he was an associate justice of Connecticut Supreme Court. He crowned his legal career when he was named chief justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court in 1957, serving until August 11 of that year when he reached the mandatory retirement age.

In retirement he continued serving as a State trial referee in New Haven and was cochairman of the 1965 state Constitutional Convention. He lived in Orange, where he died on November 10, 1978. He is buried in St. Lawrence Cemetery in West Haven.

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