Thomas R. Farrell ’52 was an accomplished attorney and political activist who served on Robert F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign committee. He passed away on July 16, 2011, at the age of 83.
Born in Bay Shore, N.Y., Farrell earned his bachelor’s degree at Colgate University before graduating from Columbia Law School, where he was a member of the Columbia Law Review staff. After serving as a U.S. Army officer in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps, Farrell began his law career in the 1950s at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett in New York City.
In 1966, Farrell accepted an appointment to New York City Mayor John Lindsay’s Civilian Review Board, which was created to field citizens’ complaints against police. He also led community groups created to combat racial discrimination. Farrell’s civil rights work helped him to secure a job as an advance man for Robert Kennedy’s 1968 presidential campaign, and he was at the Los Angeles Ambassador Hotel on the evening that the candidate was assassinated there.
During the late 1960s, Farrell joined Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison in New York City, and in the 1970s, he co-founded the firm Gold, Farrell and Marks.
Farrell is survived by his wife, Diane; his six children, Thomas, Amanda, Joshua, Cordelia, Thaddeus, and Chloe; and seven grandchildren.