Top lawyer David Girard-diCarlo to retire

David Girard-diCarlo is leaving Cozen O'Connor.
David Girard-diCarlo is leaving Cozen O'Connor.
Posted: September 15, 2012

David Girard-diCarlo, one of the city's most prominent lawyers and political figures, has announced that he will be retiring from his position with Cozen O'Connor and moving full-time to his home in Santa Fe, N.M., by the end of the year.

Girard-diCarlo said he had made the decision to leave the firm, and step down from the board of St. Joseph's University, to spend more time with his wife in Santa Fe.

"It is time," Girard-diCarlo said. "We have lots of things we want to do and we have not had the time to do them."

Girard-diCarlo, 69, for decades has been one of the nation's best-known political fund-raisers and strategists, and played a key role for numerous Republican politicians, including President George W. Bush in both the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections. Girard-diCarlo was rewarded for those efforts in 2008, when he was named U.S. Ambassador to Austria, a post in which he served until shortly after the inauguration of President Obama in 2009.

On his return to the United States, Girard-diCarlo joined the Cozen O'Connor law firm, where he has been providing strategic advice to clients on governmental relations, government law, and other matters.

"This firm is extremely honored to have worked with David," said Cozen O'Connor chief executive officer Thomas A. Decker.

Girard-diCarlo, a native Philadelphian, made his decades-long career at the intersection of the law and government. He came to prominence in the 1970s, when former Gov. Richard Thornburgh named him to the board of directors of SEPTA. He served as chairman from 1979 to 1982.

Before his diplomatic appointment, he served for 22 years as managing partner and then chairman of Blank Rome L.L.P., a time of substantial growth for the law firm. He also established the law firm as a major lobbying presence in Washington.

A graduate of Villanova University law school, Girard-diCarlo said he would end most of his local civic activities, with the exception of his membership on the board of the National Constitution Center.


Contact Chris Mondics at 215-854-5957 or cmondics@phillynews.com.

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