Oregon State Bar Bulletin — DECEMBER 2004

In Memoriam

Robert James Thorbeck of Salem died Sept. 18, 2004 at his home after a year of illness.

Thorbeck was born June 8, 1942 in Hibbing, Minn. He and his parents moved to Bemidji, Minn. in 1946, where Thorbeck graduated from Bemidji High School in 1960. In 1966 he graduated from St. Cloud State University, St. Cloud, Minn. He arrived in Salem in 1966. After two years as an insurance claims adjuster, he entered Willamette University College of Law, graduating in 1971. He joined the OSB that same year and practiced law for 33 years in Salem.

He was involved in starting the family mediation program of the Marion County Circuit Court. Jazz lover, card player, storyteller, traveler, philosopher and friend, Thorbeck collected and kept friends from kindergarten to the present. His idea of the perfect time spent was in conversation with friends (preferably over a cold beer).

Survivors include his wife Kathleen, her son, and his son.

• • • • •

Donald Sanford Richardson, a retired Portland labor attorney, died of age-related illnesses on Sept. 9. He was 87.

He had practiced labor law for more than 50 years. His clients included labor organizations and union members. He was listed in the 1989-90 edition of "The Best Lawyers in America" for his expertise in labor and employment law. In 1990 he received an award from the Oregon-Columbia chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association in recognition of his long representation of Electrical Workers Local 48. In 1991 the Oregon State Bar honored his 50 years of "valuable and meritorious service." He was a former president of the Multnomah County Bar.

Richardson served as a U.S. Army officer in battles in Europe in World War II; he was in the 95th Infantry Division, part of General George Patton’s Third Army and reached the rank of captain. While stationed in England, he met Doreen Garnett, and they were married there in Sept. 1945.

In 1951, Richardson and 10 other attorneys founded the Oregon Trial Lawyers Association.

Richardson was born in Medford on May 31, 1917, and graduated from Crater High School in Central Point. He graduated with Phi Beta Kappa honors from the University of Oregon in 1938 and earned his law degree there in 1941. In high school and college bands Richardson played the clarinet and the saxophone; later as a retiree, he played those instruments in the Beaverton Community Band.

Survivors include his wife Doreen; two daughters, a son and four grandchildren.

• • • • •

Alan Baily died Oct. 26, 2004, after a several-year battle with progressive multiple sclerosis. He was born in Silver Spring, Maryland in 1947 and graduated from high school at the age of 15. He received a B.A. in philosophy from American University in 1968. During the Vietnam War he served as a Vista volunteer with the Minnesota Welfare Rights Organization, organizing rural Minnesota farm workers. He later worked at Lane County Legal Aid as a paralegal, where he designed and supervised a new office intake system.

Baily began law school at the University of Oregon. He transferred, at the end of his first year, to become part of the first graduating class of Antioch University School of Law. While in law school, Baily was selected to intern as an administrative assistant to Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger, who repeatedly (and unsuccessfully) told Baily he needed to cut his hair.

After graduation from law school in 1975 he returned to Oregon to a Vista attorney job with the housing unit at Multnomah County Legal Aid. He organized tenants and participated in hearings, advocating the establishment of lifeline rates and organizing tenants. In 1976, he became an attorney with the Juvenile Law Center in Portland where he represented children in juvenile court, challenging the constitutionality of status offenses, bringing a successful habeas corpus petition to release a juvenile illegally committed to a state training school without a hearing, and successfully obtaining a contempt of court finding against the state for failure to provide services for a child he represented.

In 1979, Baily began working at Prisoner’s Legal Services where he became lead counsel in a suit against the Oregon Parole Board, which established the requirement that mentally ill prisoners not be indefinitely detained in prison but rather committed for treatment at the end of their prison term. Baily then founded and obtained a grant for the creation of the Juvenile Rights Project, to provide legal advocacy for Oregon’s juveniles so that the juvenile justice system would become more responsive to their needs.

In 1984, Baily was diagnosed with an aggressive form of lymphoma and battled against all odds to remission. After regaining his health, Baily turned to one of his other passions in life, his eclectic passion for music with its power to move the soul and spirit, and to be a force for change. In 1988, Baily became the station manager at KBOO, managing the overall operations of the independent, noncommercial radio station. Baily was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis which eventually required his retirement in 2000.

Throughout his life, Baily was as ferocious with voicing his progressive beliefs as he was in facing his debilitating illnesses. He was a renaissance man mastering the classical guitar, learning to craft and build award-winning furniture, and single- handedly learning the skills to rebuild and restore his Victorian home, which is now designated a national historic landmark in Portland’s Irvington neighborhood.

Baily is survived by his daughter, Sarah Baily, his former partner and friend, OSB member Diana Stuart; his extended family on the East Coast and his friends in Portland’s music and legal services community.


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