Richard A. McDaniel, lawyer and activist

Obituaries February 16, 2012 0 Comments

Richard Allen McDaniel, 73, of West Mt. Airy, a lawyer who was long active in the civil rights movement died of cancer Feb. 1 at the VNA Hospice in East Falls.

After earning a law degree from Howard University in 1969, Mr. McDaniel worked as a corporate attorney for Campbell Soup Co. before joining the law firm of civil rights activist Cecil B. Moore. He was a partner with McDaniel, Wheeler & Finch before opening his own firm in 1980.

Until he retired in 2005, Mr. McDaniel’s law practice in Center City specialized in domestic and personal injury cases. He also was the author of numerous articles published in law journals, including one on sex discrimination in the workplace that appeared in the Rutgers Law Journal.

He was past president of the Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia, an organization of African American attorneys, and served on the boards of Community Legal Services, the Philadelphia Chapter of the NAACP and the Philadelphia Federation of Black Business and Professional Organizations.

He was a member of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America and of Frontiers International, a service organization. During the 1990s, he was a member of the Fairmount Park Commission Advisory Council and was legal consultant to City Councilman Alvin Stewart. He was a former president of the Lankenau High School Parents Association.

Raised in York, Pa., he operated a shoeshine business there as a young man and graduated from York High School. He was awarded a senatorial scholarship to Lincoln University and, after graduating in 1960, moved to Philadelphia and worked as a chemist at U.S. Cocoa Co. and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

He is survived by his wife, the former Eleanor Hendricks; a son, Brian, and a sister, Diana Walker.

A memorial service was held Feb. 10 at Ivy Hill Cemetery Chapel. – WF

 

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