Stanley D. Prowse was born in Boston and grew up in northeastern Pennsylvania. He attended Yale College, graduating cum laude in 1967, and Columbia University, receiving an MA in history in 1969. He then attended Harvard Law School, receiving a JD degree in 1973.
Stanley began his legal career in the summer of 1972 as a law clerk at the Wall Street firm of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy. After law school he joined Alston & Byrd in Atlanta as a lawyer and practiced real estate and corporate law.
In 1974 Stanley and his family relocated to San Diego, where he worked in succession for two smaller law firms, handling primarily litigation and commercial bankruptcy.
In the early 1980s Stanley was Associate General Counsel for one of California's most respected homebuilders, Beverly Hills - based Shapell Industries. He then joined the real estate department of Weinberg & Green in Baltimore, where he was involved principally in real estate lending by large financial institutions.
Stanley returned to California in 1985 and opened his own law office in Carlsbad.
Stanley has served as a Director of Big Brothers of North County and as a Director of the North County Bar Association. He is a member of that Association as well as the San Diego Bar Association. He has been a member of the Hi-Noon Rotary Club of Carlsbad since 1996.