Firm Founder Richard L. Williams Dies
February 21, 2011
Senior U.S. District Judge Richard L. Williams, one of the founders of the McGuireWoods of today, died Saturday at age 87. Williams was a partner with Battle, Neal, Harris, Minor & Williams when that firm merged in 1966 with McGuire, Woods, King, Davis & Patterson to form McGuire, Woods & Battle. Except for a four-year period in the 1970s when Williams served as a Virginia state court judge, he practiced with McGuireWoods until he became a U.S. district judge in 1980.
“A giant has fallen,” said Richard
Cullen, “a giant of the judiciary and a giant of our firm. The influence
that Judge Williams had on the firm we are today is immeasurable. He led us,
taught us and inspired us in so many ways – by his brilliant strategic mind,
his love of courtroom give-and-take and his knack for cutting to the core of the
most complex issue to cite but a few. His passing leaves a void that can never
be filled, but his spirit will live on as long as there is a McGuireWoods. We
extend our deepest sympathies to his family and to the scores of friends he
The family will receive friends on Tuesday evening from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00
p.m. at Bennett Funeral Home, 3215 Cutshaw Avenue, Richmond. A celebration of
his life will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, February 23, 2011, at St.
James Episcopal Church, 1205 West Franklin Street, Richmond, with a reception to
follow. Interment will be private.