August 24, 2007
BU Law & the Morin Center Bid Farewell to Lifelong Supporter Charles H. Morin ('49)
Charles H. Morin, a 1949 graduate of Boston University School of Law and an original member of the Morin Center Board of Advisors, passed away on August 20, 2007.
At BU Law, Morin was an editor of the Law Review and graduated cum laude. “Charlie Morin was a distinguished member of a particularly distinguished class,” says Ernest M. Haddad, BU Law’s Associate Dean for Graduate Programs. “I got to know Charlie in 1967 and immediately developed an enormous respect for him.” Morin’s classmates and fellow Law Review members included notable BU Law alumni, such as United States Senator Edward Brooke (’48), United States Congressman F. Bradford Morse (’49) and former BU Law Professors Bob Kent (’49) and Jim Bailey (’48).
After graduating from BU Law, Morin began law practice with his father and brothers at Morin & Morin and lectured on estate planning and taxation at Boston University. His interest in academic dialogue continued throughout his life. Morin Center Associate Director Martin Lacdao (LL.M. ’04) recalls Morin’s guest lecture when he was a student: “Charlie Morin came down for one memorable class and offered his thoughts on what he believed were shortcomings in the law. He impressed me with his knowledge of the issues and how he defended his position as six law students tried to break down every argument he put forward. It was a great intellectual exercise and definitely a highlight of that seminar.”
Morin took special interest in securities and financial services law, and in 1960 he co-founded the law firm Colson & Morin. The firm, renamed Gadsby Hannah Colson & Morin when a past chairman of the Securities & Exchange Commission and a past general counsel of the Raytheon Company joined it, became the first Boston firm to have a branch office in Washington, D.C. Over time, Morin and Colson, who served as co-managing partners of the firm, practiced primarily out of the Washington office. Eventually, the two partners left Gadsby & Hannah to form the law firm of Dickstein, Shapiro, Colson & Morin, which later became Dickstein Shapiro Morin & Oshinsky.
In the early 1980’s, Morin provided financial support for the founding of BU Law’s Morin Center for Banking and Financial Law. The Morin Center, the first of its kind in the United States, administers the Graduate Program in Banking and Financial Law. Recounts Morin Center Director Cornelius Hurley, “I didn't know Charlie until I was named director of the Morin Center two years ago. In that period, we became very good friends, conversing regularly, mostly about investment company issues and activities at the Morin Center. In our rare moments of disagreement, I could always get a chuckle out of him by teasing that a ‘Tip’ O'Neill Democrat was now running the Center… named after a Nixon Republican."
“He was one of the most brilliant lawyers that I have ever met and he was particularly knowledgeable about mutual funds,” says friend and colleague of 40 years Gordon Parker Ramsey (‘64). “He was one of those people that, as long as you were on his team, you could do no wrong. But you wouldn’t want to be on the other team; he’d immobilize you quickly.”
In a career spanning 50 years of law practice, Morin has served as a lawyer in the Central Intelligence Agency; represented the general executive board of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters; served as counsel to Charles W. Colson in disbarment proceedings in Virginia, Massachusetts and Washington, D.C.; represented Senators Edward Brooke and John Tower in personal matters; and counseled Bear Stearns Companies in government relations. He also served as counsel to the independent directors of one of the largest investment company complexes in the United States, which is responsible for the management of more than $200 billion.
Morin leaves his wife of 56 years, three sons, nine grandchildren and one great-grandchild.