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Frank J. Brainerd Jr.

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Brainerd, Frank J., Jr.
1927 - 2012
Frank Judson Brainerd, Jr. a leader in Denver's business, legal, and philanthropic communities for five decades, died on August 2nd. He was a true scholar; a loving and proud husband, father, and grandfather; a keen student of the human condition and the physical universe; a virtuoso in the English language; an eloquent and reasoned voice for economic justice; a connoisseur of baseball; and a principled, determinedly happy, and compassionate man. He was quite content with a SPAM sandwich on white bread.
Frank was born to Mary Scribner Rand and Frank J. Brainerd and raised in Portland, Connecticut. He graduated from Trinity College and Harvard Law School before emigrating to Denver in 1957, sleeping in his car and subsisting on coffee for several weeks as he took the bar exam and looked for employment - eventually landing a position with the Colorado National Bank (now US Bank) trust department. In 1958, he married Helen Sue Bebb, his great love until and following her passing in 2009.
For 30 years, Frank worked in various capacities as an officer of Colorado National Bank and its holding company, ultimately serving as general legal counsel for both. In 1986, he became general counsel for First Interstate Bank (now Wells Fargo Bank) until his retirement from banking in 1991. As a "retiree," he was engaged as a consultant and expert witness in dozens of national banking and commercial law matters.
Frank was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Colorado Bar Association; Treasurer of the Colorado Lawyers Trust Account Foundation; a member of the Board of Directors of the Colorado Judicial Institute; President of the Salvation Army Advisory Board for Colorado; Treasurer of Teachers Award Foundation; and a Board Member and Treasurer of the Colorado Center on Law and Policy. He was a longtime congregant of the Park Hill United Methodist Church.
Perhaps the most cherished of Frank's affiliations was his connection with Camp O-At-Ka in Sebago, Maine, where he presided as an elected "King" in his youth and early adulthood. For the rest of his life, Frank maintained fond ties to the boys with whom he bunked and competed, and those he counseled and coached. The family assumes he has already made another smooth run around the bases at the O-At-Ka ball field.
Frank is survived by his three children, Stephen (Betsy), Sally (Jack Snow), and Susan (Joyce Dinelle); his four grandchildren, Jackson, Emma, and Lucy Brainerd, and Nell Snow; his sisters, Dorothy and Eleanor (siblings Mary, James, and Susan are recently deceased); and the memories of Frank's remarkable intellect, wit, devotion, and kindness held by his friends, colleagues, neighbors, and extended family. Our planet is now a poorer place.
At Frank's request, there will be no memorial service. Donations in Frank's memory may be made to the Colorado Center on Law and Policy (which provides independent research and advocacy on matters of justice, economic security, access to healthcare, and responsible fiscal policy), 789 Sherman Street, #300, Denver, CO 80203.

Published in Denver Post from Aug. 6 to Aug. 9, 2012
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