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Richard Grand

Obituary Condolences

Dead at 83


Attorney Richard D. Grand, 83, of Tucson, nationally recognized for his success as a plaintiff's trial lawyer, died suddenly in San Francisco on April 7 of natural causes. Grand was the founder of The Inner Circle of Advocates, a group of plaintiffs' attorneys called by The National Law Journal, "the elite of the plaintiffs' bar."


Grand was born in what was then the independent nation of Danzig in 1930. He came to New York City with his parents in 1939, just before the Nazis entered his homeland. After earning his undergraduate degree from New York University and his law degree from the University Of Arizona College Of Law in 1958, Grand entered the practice of law in Tucson.


In 1972, Grand recovered a jury verdict of $3.5 million which was the largest ever received at the time for a single personal injury. Following the award, Grand brought together 11 prominent plaintiffs' lawyers from throughout the country to form The Inner Circle of Advocates. Grand said it was designed to be a "think tank for the most qualified legal brain trust in the United States." It was formed as an attempt to level the playing field between the average consumer and the enormous resources of the insurance industry, the auto industry, the tobacco industry, and the pharmaceutical industry, among others.


The invitation-only group is currently limited to one hundred members, and has included such well known lawyers as Joe Jamail, John Edwards, Johnie Cochran, Moe Levine and Court of Appeals Justice, Jack Fuchsberg.


"It has worked as planned," said Atty. Michael Koskoff, of Connecticut, the group's current president. "Members have been in the forefront of litigation against negligent health providers, drug manufacturers and makers of defective products." According to Koskoff, the litigation against the tobacco industry had its genesis in the Circle and was pursued by Inner Circle member Ron Motley and other Inner Circle members.


"Richard Grand was a true visionary," Koskoff said. "Thanks to his guiding hand we have a highly talented group of accomplished lawyers who generously share cutting-edge ideas to allow us to better serve our clients. The cooperation is necessary to combat the enormous resources of big business and insurance companies."


After forming The Inner Circle, Grand was named Honorary President of the Richard Grand Society, the premier association of personal injury attorneys in Great Britain. He also was a member of the International Society of Paraplegia and the British Academy of Forensic Sciences (Legal Section). Grand published numerous articles on case management and the presentation of traumatic injury. He was a member of the State Bar of Arizona and a certified specialist in injury and wrongful death litigation, Board of Legal Specialization of the State Bar of Arizona.


Over the course of his life Grand received many honors from the University of Arizona including: Richard and Marcia Grand Alumnus of the Year Award, 2011; Distinguished Alumni Award, 2010; and Professional Achievement Award, 2002, an award given to a person who has attained prominence in his or her field. Grand was the twelfth person honored.


"I was brought up during the Depression," Grand said recently. "We were taught to work and were expected to work . . .I don't play golf and I don't play tennis."


Grand never retired ancontinued to handle cases right up to the last day of his life.


Grand is survived by his wife, Marcia, and daughter, Cindy. He and Marcia were married six months after they met in 1952, a year after he moved to Tucson.


Sinai Chapel, San Francisco, is handling funeral arrangements. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the College of Art at the University of Arizona.

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on Apr. 14, 2013
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