Herbert “Trip” Burginder III, a real estate attorney who believed legal documents should be written in plain language, died in his sleep of what appeared to be a heart attack on April 19 at his home in Owings Mills. He was 53 years old.
He was born in Baltimore, the son of Herbert Burgender Jr., a workers compensation attorney, and Sidney Schweizer, a teacher. He grew up in Cheswolde and was a graduate of the Gilman School in 1987. He was the captain of the school’s water polo and swimming teams.
After receiving an undergraduate degree from Cornell University, he attended University of Baltimore Law School and was accepted into the Maryland Bar in 1994.
He met his future wife, Tamara “Tami” Lippmann, after she was introduced to him by his older sister and the girlfriend of one of his friends. It was their first date at a bigger restaurant.
He was interested in politics, and joined the Parris N. Glendening campaign staff as a volunteer. In the 1994 election, he was present on the city’s Board of Election Supervisors to tally the votes for Mr. Glinding and his Republican opponent, Ellen R. Sauerbury. Following Mr. Glendening’s election, Mr. Burgunder served on his transition team. Initially he worked with John T Willis, Secretary of State.
Mr. Burginder later worked in the Ministry of Labor and was appointed Ombudsman in the Ministry of Business and Economic Development. He was an organizer of state charitable organizations, among other duties.
Burginder has taught at the University of Maryland School of Law as an adjunct faculty member in the Legal Analysis, Writing and Research Program.
“Trip was all about clear, specific language and clear communication in writing,” his wife said. “The gold standard for him was a document that everyone could understand. He was practical and honest to a fault. As a lawyer, he often used humor to work out a situation – a way to help people fit in and bring them together. He was good at making people less adversarial.”
He later joined the law firm Kramon & Graham and was a land use and transaction attorney. He was then in solo training and later worked for Raymond Law Company. He had an office in Mount Washington.
“Trip was laughing so hard and had a good sense of humor,” said Kirby Fowler, a friend and president of the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. “He gave great advice and was a resource on real estate and land use matters. He was trustworthy and an honest person.”
During his legal career, he represented merchants in Mount Washington Village and owner of the Copycat Building in Station North, among other clients.
In a 2008 Baltimore Sun story, Mr. Burgundy spoke of city property about to be sold for non-payment of taxes. Instead, he suggested, the city conduct a public awareness campaign to inform late taxpayers of the tax sale and refund process before costs are incurred and thus reach those who evade notification.
“The state should also create a fund to help pay tax bills for those who can’t really pay their bills,” said Mr. Burgunder.
He was called up for his work ethic.
“He was wickedly smart. He had his own way of doing things. He had an intense love for his family and his career. He had a world of friends,” his father-in-law, Ron Lipman, said. “He was a hard worker. He read well, and did some cooking because he was a vegetarian. He didn’t like it [retail] out of stores, so he was getting in and out of them fairly quickly.”
Friends said Mr. Burginder was disciplined and efficient with his time.
Mr. Lippmann also said: “The day he died, he woke up very early, took part in a master’s swim practice in Meadowbrook in the morning, then worked on his active legal practice and went to his daughter’s lacrosse at City College.”
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Burgundy spent his childhood summers at Camp Wenpost in Connecticut. He learned to swim at the Suburban Club and continued to play the sport his whole life. Later he took up cycling and running. Complete a half marathon, race a triathlon and swim across the Chesapeake Bay. While in college, he swam competitively at Cornell University.
After his children became students at Friends School in Baltimore, he became a co-parent and joined the Board of Trustees.
“He had an affinity for Friends School. He really embraced the Quaker side of him. She called out to him. In his family Cedar, he also had a minute’s silence. As a Trustee at Friends, Norman Forbusch said he brought a sense of comfort and convenience to his fellow trustees.”
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“It was easy to have Trip near you and he was always happy,” said childhood friend David Stouse. “He always used his charm and sense of humor to solve any problem. He had the ability to handle complex issues and keep them simple.”
Mr. Burgunder was a family historian and kept the family tree.
He is survived by his wife of 25 years, Dr. Tamara Lipman Burginder, a pediatrician at Mount Washington Children’s Hospital; two sons, Ben Burgundy and Sam Burgundy, both from Baltimore; Daughter of Maisie Burginder of Baltimore; sister, Rachel Burjender Hoch of Stevenson; and his brother, Brad Burginder, from Baltimore.
Mass was held on April 21 at the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, of which he was a member.