Arthur J. Sohmer


Arthur J. Sohmer, who had been a campaign manager, gubernatorial appointments secretary and finally chief of the vice presidential staff of Spiro T. Agnew, died Sunday of lung cancer at his home in Woodstock, N.Y.

Mr. Sohmer, who was 65, was a founding partner in the Learning Tree, a mail-order company dealing in special education materials.

A memorial service for Mr. Sohmer will be held later.

He came to the Baltimore area in 1956 as a salesman for the Union Camp Corp. and continued working for the company until he became appointments secretary for the newly elected Gov. Agnew in 1966.

Mr. Sohmer managed the 1962 Agnew campaign for Baltimore County executive after losing his own primary campaign for the House of Delegates, and also managed the 1966 gubernatorial campaign.

Named to the Baltimore County Tax Appeals Court in 1963 by County Executive Agnew, Mr. Sohmer was made chief judge a year later. He resigned in 1966 to take the appointments post in the governor's office.

Mr. Sohmer served as chief of staff to the vice president after the 1968 election.

After Agnew resigned as vice president and pleaded no contest to tax charges in 1973, Mr. Sohmer worked briefly for the General Services Administration and the U.S. Railway Association.

In 1978, Mr. Sohmer, who had lived in Towson and then in Chevy Chase, moved to Woodstock, where he became a partner in the educational materials company.

Mr. Sohmer, who was born in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., served in the Navy during World War II and was a graduate of Lafayette College. Mr. Sohmer received a law degree in 1968 that he earned in night classes at the University of Maryland at Baltimore.

He is survived by his wife, the former E. Winsley Muller; a son, E. Harrison Sohmer of New York City; and a daughter, Mara Sohmer of Severna Park.

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