Morris Nichols Mourns Passing of Retired Partner Frank Biondi
Morris Nichols is saddened to learn of the passing of O. Francis “Frank” Biondi on Friday, May 30, 2023.
“Frank was a legend in the Delaware bar and brought many interesting clients and cases to Morris Nichols,” said Jon Abramczyk, a corporate litigation partner. “He was fearless. Even when the legal issues presented were well outside of our usual practice areas, he would remind new lawyers that the Delaware laws are “written in English,” and send us off to find the law and solve the problem. No matter was too large or too small for Frank’s attention. He served his clients well, and took an interest in training new lawyers to serve their clients with the same level of attention and zeal that he brought to every matter. He will be missed by the Firm, by the Delaware bar, and by the people in this State that had the unforgettable experience of working with him.”
A former Morris Nichols partner, Frank played an integral role in developing Delaware’s Financial Center Development Act of 1981, serving as lead author of the legislation and ushering the seminal banking bill through to passage. The legislation greatly impacted the state, being credited with transforming Delaware’s economy and opening the door for national banks and credit card companies to start operations in Delaware.
“Frank was a force of nature. He materially impacted −and improved− the business and political shape of Delaware for decades, and he did the same for Morris Nichols and those who worked closely with him,” reflected senior counsel Michael Houghton. “What I achieved both as a lawyer and as individual with modest impact on government and policy is because of Frank Biondi.”
“When I arrived at the firm, Frank was already a senior partner. He was, in fact, the quintessential senior partner in many ways,” remembered corporate litigation partner R. Judson (RJ) Scaggs, Jr. “He was tough, smart, savvy and wise. He had an incredible memory and was very adept at using past experiences to formulate solutions to current problems. He could be a stern taskmaster when required to meet a client’s goals, but he was also affable and engaging. He would share tales of the old days with the associates, including when he was the City Solicitor during the Wilmington Riot of 1968 and military occupation. He was a steady and confident leader, who always seemed to know the next best step to accomplish the mission. He believed strongly in professionalism and always held himself and those around him to the highest ethical standards. I feel blessed to have known him and learned from him.”
“Frank was a giant of the Delaware bar. He had a rare triple threat of being incredibly smart, very practical, and politically connected,” reflected corporate litigator Ken Nachbar. “And, he had a great sense of humor. Frank came to Morris Nichols in the midst of successful career, after essentially drafting and successfully lobbying for passage of the legislation that brought the credit card banks to Delaware – all the banks wanted to hire Frank as their counsel. He was a fierce advocate for his clients. Frank made great contributions to the State of Delaware, to the Delaware bar, and to Morris Nichols. He will be missed.”
Morris Nichols sends our deepest condolences to Frank’s family.