May/June 2013
In Memoriam: Judge Frank J. Magill

The Honorable Frank Magill, Circuit Judge for U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, died June 2, at his home in Fargo, North Dakota, after a long battle with Alzheimerís disease. Frank John Magill was born in Verona, North Dakota. He served in the United States Navy from 1945 to 1947. He received his undergraduate degree from Georgetown University in 1951, his masterís degree in economics from Columbia University in 1953, and his law degree from Georgetown Law School in 1955.

He received his undergraduate degree from Georgetown University in 1951, his masterís degree in economics from Columbia University in 1953, and his law degree from Georgetown Law School in 1955. From 1955 to 1986 he practiced with the firm of Nilles, Hansen, Magill & Davies. As a litigator he was highly regarded throughout North Dakota. He was an active member of the ABAís Public Utilities Section, and he lobbied for the Burlington Northern Railroad during 13 legislative sessions. He was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in 1986. From 1988 to 1998 he served on the U.S. Judicial Councilís Committee on Financial Disclosure, and served as chairman from 1993 to 1998. He took senior status in 1997.

During his time with the Eighth Circuit Judge Magill authored opinions in a number of interesting cases. In a securities fraud case, he held that accountants must participate in the operation or management of the enterprise itself in order to be subject to RICO liability. Arthur Young & Co. v. Reves, 937 F.2d 1310 (8th Cir. 1991). In a First Amendment case where a school restricted after-hours access to only Scouts and athletic groups, he held that the school engaged in viewpoint discrimination that did not serve a compelling government interest and therefore violated free speech rights. Good News/Good Sports Club v. School District of Ladue, 28 F.3d 1501 (8th Cir. 1994).

In his spare time he enjoyed sailing, playing tennis, and downhill skiing. Later in life he enjoyed spending time with his family at their lake-side cabin. Judge Magill is survived by his wife, Mary, their six children, and thirteen grandchildren.