About Rick Lowe
Early Life. Rick was born in Philadelphia, and grew up in Abington, the youngest in a family with three sons. He graduated from The William Penn Charter School, and went on to Yale University, where he received his degree in American History. Rick has always been an avid soccer fan. While in high school Rick captained a club team that went on to win the state championship. He continued to play soccer while at Yale, and was named to the All New England team. These days Rick is still a fan, but his playing days are behind him. He did, however, enjoy coaching both of his daughters, although it is less clear whether they enjoyed his sidelines advice! Rick’s interest in American history has continued unabated since college, and his taste in books continues to favor biographies and studies of the Civil War.
An Accomplished Attorney. Rick attended New York University School of Law, graduating in the top ten percent of his class, and has more than 35 years of legal experience, including more than 10 years as an arbitrator, and almost as long as a mediator and a “judge pro tem” (judge for a day) in complex cases. Rick specializes in construction matters, for which he has developed a national reputation. He is a Fellow of the American College of Construction Lawyers, the most prestigious group of construction lawyers in the country. He now sits on the group’s Board, and, as the chair of the group’s Diversity Committee has championed that cause. Rick has written extensively, and has appeared on innumerable panels in three countries, and in about 20 states, on a diverse range of legal topics.
A Record of Public Service. From the earliest days of his career as a lawyer, Rick has demonstrated a commitment to public service. While still a law student, Rick volunteered with the ACLU, working in the areas of juvenile justice and due process rights. As a young lawyer, Rick became active with Philadelphia Volunteers for the Indigent (VIP), a group that organized lawyers to provide pro bono legal services. Rick served on the VIP Board, and ultimately became President of the organization. He also was president of the alumni supporters of his high school, Penn Charter.
Rick served as Mayor of Swarthmore, the first Democrat to do so. On his first day as Mayor, he joined Mayors Against Illegal Guns, and often appeared and spoke at rallies for the cause of decreasing gun violence, including in Media, Chester, Harrisburg, and Washington. During his tenure as Mayor, when the state legislature’s gerrymandering efforts included an attempt to divide the borough, Rick was a named plaintiff in the successful action to stop the legislature. In recognition of his contributions to the community, in 2015 the Swarthmore Lions Club named Rick “Citizen of the Year.”
In 2013 Rick began volunteering at Graterford Prison (now SCI Phoenix), a maximum-security prison about an hour north of Philadelphia. Rick combined his knowledge of history and the law and created a course for the men – primarily “lifers” – on the history of the American Constitution. As a result of the relationships that developed from his teaching, Rick was asked by the men to become their outside liaison and assist in their effort to pass legislation that would permit parole eligibility for lifers. Rick accepted this responsibility and continues to visit the men regularly. and work on such legislation.
A Commitment to Family, Friends and Community. Rick is very proud to say that he has been happily married to Margie McAboy for over 34 years. They have two children, Emma (28) and Abby (24), both of whom graduated from Strath Haven High School in Wallingford. Emma went on to graduate from Vassar, and Abby from Temple where she recently received a master’s degree in city planning. Although Rick’s childhood friends from Abington have gone in many different directions, both professionally and geographically, Rick has remained close to a group of friends that met in elementary school. A resident of Delaware County since 1992, Rick and his family made their home in Swarthmore for over 22 years. They moved to Middletown in 2014. For many years Rick and his family belonged to Congregation Beth Israel in Middletown, and Rick served on its Board.