March 30, 2013

In Memoriam: Richard J. Kissel

All of us at Drinker Biddle & Reath mourn the passing of our retired colleague and good friend Richard John Kissel who passed away on the evening of March 23rd at the age of 76, following a courageous battle with cancer. Dick is survived by his wife Donna. They were married for more than 50 years and have three children, Roy, David and Audrey, and seven grandchildren Katie, Declan, Elizabeth, Roman, Caroline, Frances, and Josephine.

Dick received his J.D. from the Northwestern University School of Law in 1961. In the early 1970’s, while working for Abbott Laboratories in the office of the general counsel, he became a co-drafter of the original Illinois Environmental Protection Act. When it became law, Governor Richard B. Ogilvie appointed Dick to the newly created Illinois Pollution Control Board. Dick was an innovator and leader and became known for establishing environmental law as a distinct and important practice area in the U.S. and across the globe.

In 1973, Dick returned to private practice in environmental law. In April of 1988, he joined the Chicago office of Gardner Carton & Douglas and became the core of the Environmental Law department. Dick served as Chair of this department from its inception until 1996. He also was on Gardner Carton’s Management Committee and spent time as Chair of the committee. He was an adjunct professor at Chicago-Kent College of Law and the University of Illinois School of Public Health. He was an author and contributor to the Illinois CLE.

Funeral services were held at 11:30 a.m. on April 2 at St. Patrick's Church, 950 West Everett Road in Lake Forest.

Dick will be greatly missed and our hearts and prayers go out to all of Dick's family and friends.
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