Paul C.G. Dewey, 77, chancellor of the Philadelphia Bar Association in 1978, died of a heart attack June 4 at his Newtown Square home.

During his term as chancellor, Mr. Dewey urged several reforms.

He favored allowing television cameras into the city's courtrooms.

"I think it would show the courts not to be such an unusual, super-secret place," Mr. Dewey said in an interview with the Philadelphia Daily News.

"It would show justice isn't an elitist mechanism, that, in fact, there are minority lawyers, judges who handle themselves professionally."

Thirty years later, the courts are still closed to cameras.

During his term, the Bar Association urged merit selection of judges, endorsing reforms recommended by the Pennsylvania Bar Association.

Mr. Dewey said that the plan would "end favoritism and ensure the selection of qualified lawyers" as judges.

Judges are still elected.

And during his term, the Bar Association Board of Governors voted to boycott private clubs that denied membership to women and minorities.

The vote, joining the Bar Association to a boycott by several groups, forbade any of its 70 committees from holding any business or social function at any club that discriminated.

Ken Shear, executive director of the Bar Association then and now, said yesterday that the boycott succeeded because, over time, "the Union League opened up, and a number of the other private eating clubs as well."

The boycott extended to suburban country clubs, Shear said. "They would see there was a loss of business, they looked at themselves and said, 'We have to do this' " - be open to all.

Born in Bryn Athyn, Mr. Dewey graduated from St. Paul's School in Concord, N.H., in 1949, Princeton University in 1953, and the University of Pennsylvania School of Law in 1956.

After serving on the Army legal staff at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico, he was the executive director of the Philadelphia Bar Association from 1964 until 1967, when he joined the Philadelphia law firm Blank Rome, where he dealt with trusts and estates.

Mr. Dewey was a board member of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, a member of fund-raising committees at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and trustee and chairman of the executive committee of Hahnemann Medical College.

He served as chairman of the Gladwyne Montessori School and was a member of fund-raising committees for the Haverford School and St. David's Church. He was also a member of First Troop, Philadelphia City Cavalry.

Mr. Dewey is survived by his wife, Alexandra; sons Fred and Paul Jr.; a sister; and three grandchildren.

A memorial service will be at 2 p.m. today at St. David's Church, 763 S. Valley Forge Rd., Wayne.

Contact staff writer Walter F. Naedele at 215-854-5607 or wnaedele@phillynews.com.