Frank H. Morison; LLM 1951; died August 5, 2013


Frank H. Morison (February 20, 1925 - August 5, 2013)

Frank H. Morison, 88, a resident of Fleming, Colorado and Litchfield Park, Arizona passed away on August 5, 2013 in Denver, Colorado of natural causes.

Frank was born on February 20, 1925 in Sterling, Colorado to James H. Morison and Agnes Helen (Butler) Morison. He was the youngest of three children. Frank grew up in Sterling and graduated from Sterling High School in 1942. After high school, he went on to University of Colorado, where he received his undergraduate degree in 1946. While at CU, he met the love of his live, Faith Engle. They were married in 1946. Frank continued his studies at the University of Colorado and Harvard law school. While attending law school, Frank enlisted and was commissioned as an officer in the United States Navy, where he served honorably during World War II in the Pacific. After the war, Frank continued his legal studies at CU and graduated with an LLB in law.

After law school, Frank joined Holland & Hart in Denver as one of the firm's first lawyers. He was a brilliant lawyer who literally helped create environmental law in the United States and founded the American Bar Association's Section on Environmental Law. He was also responsible for creating the Land Use Commission and Land Use Commission legislation in Colorado. He championed the vision of the regional office concept and Rocky Mountain preeminence that fueled and sustained Holland & Hart's success. Frank was revered by his clients, not just for his legal acumen, but because he truly made his clients his friends, and his friends his clients. Frank was a gifted mentor to many of Holland & Hart's lawyers.

Frank had a wonderful sense of humor, with an infectious laugh, as well as a gift for friendship. He lived life large; was a great raconteur and story-teller. He loved to play golf and was a member of the Denver Country Club for many years. He also enjoyed playing golf in Litchfield Park, Arizona as a member of the Wigwam Country Club, where he and Faith spent many winters. In his retirement, Frank took up cooking and became famous for his Orange Marmalade Jam, which won a blue ribbon at the Logan County Fair one summer.

Concurrent with his legal career, Frank continued to be involved in managing the family's wheat farms in northeastern Colorado. He was passionate about being a good steward of the land and was at the forefront of the sustainable agricultural movement. Upon retiring from his legal practice, he enthusiastically returned full time to farming. He never missed a wheat harvest regardless of where he was living. He traveled all over the country to meet with farmers and experts to learn and share his knowledge of soil conservation and enrichment.

Frank and Faith were lifelong members of Saint Thomas Episcopal Church in Denver, Colorado. More recently, he also attended Saint Peter's Episcopal Church in Litchfield Park, Arizona.

Frank is survived by his three children, Mary Faith Morison of Searsmont, Maine; Frank Butler Morison and his wife Crystal of Goodyear, Arizona and Ironton, Missouri; and Bruce Engle Morison and his wife Melinda of Whitefish, Montana. He is survived by five grandchildren, Kathleen (Zachary) Elledge, Matthew Morison; Claire B. Morison, Jake E. Morison and Emily J. Morison. Frank is also survived by his older sister, Jennie Soderstrom of Littleton, Colorado and by niece Barry Jo Hannah and nephews, Karl Soderstrom and Kurt Soderstrom.

Frank was predeceased by his beloved wife Faith, his son James, his parents James & Helen and his older sister Josephine.

A Memorial Service for Frank will be held at Saint Thomas Episcopal Church on Saturday, August 10, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. Memorial donations may be made to the Fleming Colorado Community Library.

[Published in The Denver Post on August 8, 2013]