William McRae

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William McRae
Florida Gators – No. 9
Position Guard
Class Graduate (B.A. 1932)
Career history
College Florida (1928–1932)
High school West Palm Beach
Personal information
Born: (1909-09-25)September 25, 1909
Marianna, Florida
Died: January 27, 1973(1973-01-27) (aged 63)
Career highlights and awards

William Allan McRae Jr. (September 25, 1909 – January 27, 1973) was an American lawyer and United States federal judge. He was also a second-team All-American football player for the University of Florida.

McRae was born in 1909 in Marianna, Florida. He enrolled in the University of Florida in 1927. While attending Florida, he played at the guard position for coach Charlie Bachman's Florida Gators football team from 1928 to 1930. During his sophomore season in 1928, he was a standout lineman for the Gators team that finished 8–1, losing only to the Tennessee Volunteers by single point in the final game of the season. After the season, United Press named him as a second-team All-American on its 1928 All-America Team.[1]

He graduated valedictorian from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1932, and graduated from the university with a Juris Doctor degree in 1933. He received a Rhodes Scholarship to attend the University of Oxford in 1933, where he studied at Christ Church College, and received a Bachelor of Letters degree from Oxford in 1936.

McRae worked as a lawyer in private practice in Jacksonville, Florida from 1936 to 1940. He was a professor of law at the University of Florida College of Law from 1940 to 1941, and served as a colonel in the U.S. Army Air Corps from 1942 to 1945 during World War II. He served as an adviser to the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the June 1945 San Francisco Conference, which founded the United Nations and drafted the United Nations Charter.[2]

McRae was a partner in the law firm of Holland, Bevis & McRae (which later became Holland & Knight) in Bartow, Florida from 1946 to 1961. In 1952, he served as the president of The Florida Bar.

United States President John F. Kennedy nominated McRae to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida on February 20, 1961, to the seat vacated by William J. Barker. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on March 3, 1961, and received his commission on March 8, 1961.

McRae was reassigned on October 29, 1962, to the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida. He served as the chief judge of the Middle District from 1971 to 1973, and continued to serve on the court until his death in 1973.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Frank Getty (December 3, 1928). "Getty Picks Stars". The Pittsburgh Press. p. 36. 
  2. ^ A Guide to the William A. McRae Papers - University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries Special and Area Studies Collections


  • Carlson, Norm, University of Florida Football Vault: The History of the Florida Gators, Whitman Publishing, LLC, Atlanta, Georgia (2007). ISBN 0-7948-2298-3.
  • Douchant, Mike, Encyclopedia of College Basketball, Gale Research, New York, New York (1995). ISBN 0-8103-9640-8.
  • Golenbock, Peter, Go Gators! An Oral History of Florida's Pursuit of Gridiron Glory, Legends Publishing, LLC, St. Petersburg, Florida (2002). ISBN 0-9650782-1-3.
  • Hairston, Jack, Tales from the Gator Swamp: A Collection of the Greatest Gator Stories Ever Told, Sports Publishing, LLC, Champaign, Illinois (2002). ISBN 1-58261-514-4.
  • McCarthy, Kevin M., Fightin' Gators: A History of University of Florida Football, Arcadia Publishing, Mount Pleasant, South Carolina (2000). ISBN 978-0-7385-0559-6.
  • McEwen, Tom, The Gators: A Story of Florida Football, The Strode Publishers, Huntsville, Alabama (1974). ISBN 0-87397-025-X.
  • Nash, Noel, ed., The Gainesville Sun Presents The Greatest Moments in Florida Gators Football, Sports Publishing, Inc., Champaign, Illinois (1998). ISBN 1-57167-196-X.

External links[edit]

Legal offices
Preceded by
William Julius Barker
Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida
Succeeded by
seat abolished
Preceded by
new seat
Judge of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida
Succeeded by
John A. Reed Jr.