Roland S. ‘Robin’ Homet Jr., lawyer and author

July 22, 2013

Roland S. “Robin” Homet Jr., a lawyer and author who led White House policy studies, organized and presided over forums and research projects on foreign and domestic affairs and directed communications policies and studies, died July 8 at he Sunrise senior living facility in Washington. He was 80.

He died of heart disease, said his daughter, Cynthia Baumann.

Mr. Homet wrote four books, including “The Wisdom of Serpents” (2003), which was based on a series of meetings and discussions among religious and business leaders, retired diplomats and military officers over a three-year period. The book explored the roles of religious attitudes and beliefs in the formulation and conduct of foreign policy.

A 1990 book, “The New Realism,” was based on a seven-year research and discussion project of which Mr. Homet was the facilitator, under the auspices of the American Committee on U.S.-Soviet Relations. That book explored pathways for post Cold War diplomacy.

For more than 30 years, Mr. Homet was convener, organizer and moderator of discussion and study projects under the auspices of various foundations, nonprofit organizations and government agencies. They explored such issues as the integrity of NATO, international oil trading, communications, nuclear arms and political campaign finance. In 1996, Mr. Homet was moderator and producer of a series, “Foreign Policy Choices,” broadcast on WNVC public television.

Roland Stevens Homet Jr. was born in Estoril, Portugal, where his father worked for Mobil Oil. He graduated in 1950 from the private Phillips Academy in Andover, Mass., and magna cum laude from Harvard in 1954. He served in the Navy before graduating in 1961 from Harvard Law School.

Early in his career, Mr. Homet was a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justices Felix Frankfurter and John Marshall Harlan and was a lawyer in London and Washington.

From the 1960s into the 1980s, he was chief counsel and study director for energy and communications policies at the White House, consultant to the Senate Judiciary and House Foreign Affairs Committees, a State Department negotiator on matters involving NATO and UNESCO, director of international communications policies for the United States Information Agency and communications policy director for the Aspen Institute.

He was a member of St. John’s Episcopal Church, Lafayette Square, and the Peace Commission of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington. He had written and produced a play at St. John’s about John the Baptist, the biblical preacher who baptized Jesus of Nazarath.

His marriages to Sarah Chappell and Meredith Morgan Love ended in divorce. Survivors include four children from his first marriage, Cynthia Baumann of Fairfield, Conn., Adrienne Hand of Bethesda, Brian Homet of Herndon and Jennifer Catto of Carbondale, Colo.; and nine grandchildren.

— Bart Barnes

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