Home Community People Law Firm Adds Familiar Name to its Attorney Roster

Law Firm Adds Familiar Name to its Attorney Roster


June 22, 2005 — The law offices of Hodge & Francois have added a new attorney to their firm, but not a new name. Mark D. Hodge, most recently an assistant attorney general with the V.I. Department of Justice, has joined Hodge & Francois as the newest associate, after two years with the government in the civil division.
In joining Hodge & Francois, Mark becomes the second member of the Hodge family to do so, because senior partner, Maria Tankenson Hodge is his mother.
Maria Hodge opened her practice in St. Thomas in 1975, when she, too, completed a tour of duty with the V.I. Attorney General’s office and moved on to private practice.
At that time, young Mark was just a year old. In 1991, Maria formed a partnership with Denise Francois, and their firm has grown over the years to include Adam Christian, the son of the late Chief Judge of the District Court, Almeric L. Christian (who Maria had served as law clerk and who she proudly identifies as her mentor) and Alan D. Smith, another former member of the staff at the V.I. Department of Justice and also a former Commissioner of Planning and Natural Resources.
Mark was born in St. Thomas, where he attended Montessori and Antilles Schools. He went on to attend Amherst College before working in the U.S. Senate for the Democratic Policy Committee under Sen. Tom Daschle, and then as systems administrator for Eleanor Holmes Norton, the Delegate to Congress for Washington, D.C.
He later went on to law school at Georgetown University in 1998, graduating in 2001. Before returning home, he served as a law clerk to Judge Michael Rankin of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, until he was interviewed by the current attorney general, Alva Swan, to come back to the Virgin Islands.
Asked how he felt about joining Hodge & Francois, Mark said, "actually, this is a lot like coming home. I worked for my mother’s law firm off and on since I was 12 years old, beginning as a messenger. It feels good to be back as a lawyer."
Mark names his father, Lawrence Hodge, as a major influence in his life and on his decision to come back to the Virgin Islands. His father always told him proudly, that of his grandmother’s seven children, every one ended up living in the Virgin Islands, although many of them spent part of their lives living elsewhere.
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