Remembering Stan Black

A pioneering lawyer and former partner at HBC, our friend Stan Black died Friday, August 30, 2019, following a long battle with melanoma.

Stan’s legacy of leadership, commitment to community, and outstanding legal service is an enduring part of the culture at HBC today.  Stan believed that the practice of law was first and foremost about serving clients, and he built his relationships with those clients into many life-long friendships.  Stan’s vision of building a collegial, constructive community within the firm, that respected and valued every member, was the building block for HBC’s ethos today.  He will be remembered for his wide grin and generous heart, as well as for his measured reasoning and bold initiative. 

Stan joined the firm in 1959, joining Dudley Hutchinson, Sr., and his sons, Dudley Hutchinson, Jr., and T. Henry “Hank” Hutchinson in their regional law practice.  When Stan arrived on the steps of Hutchinson and Hutchinson he was 29 years old, newly married to Marge Black (neé Gordon) and a recent graduate of the UCLA law school.  He was only the second lawyer in the history of the firm at that point to have graduated from a law school other than the University of Colorado (although Stan did get his undergraduate degree from CU, where he set records in swimming and also competed in track and field).

During his time at the firm, Stan helped lead HBC in the transition from an intimate family practice handling local litigation and transactional matters, to a firm of more than 20 lawyers serving a diverse array of regional and national clients.  Stan was instrumental in growing the firm to suit the rapidly developing community in and around Boulder.  He handled everything from complex business and real estate transactions to simple wills.  A former Navy fighter pilot, Stan was never one to shy away from a difficult case or a challenging issue.

Stan believed that lawyers needed a quality of life to match their quality of practice, and he gave the same enthusiasm to his tennis, his rafting, his hiking, and especially his flying that he gave to his legal practice and to our firm.  Stan stewarded the firm through development of its unique sabbatical program, spending his own first sabbatical in 1973 at the London School of Economics earning his master’s degree in international law. In 1980, he used his sabbatical year to serve as a bush pilot in Zimbabwe for Mission Aviation Fellowship, flying doctors, nurses and medical supplies to remote villages in Zimbabwe.  In 1987 he again served as a volunteer for Mission Aviation Fellowship, traveling to 29 countries for as a legal advisor during his third sabbatical.

Stan was a “doer” and he passionately lived his life by the motto “service above self.” His firm resolve to give back what we can to our communities, fueled a lifetime of inspiring leadership in philanthropy.  Stan was a lifelong Rotarian, serving as President of Boulder Rotary in 1976-1977, and becoming District Governor in 1985-1986.  Stan also co-founded the Boulder County Community Foundation in 1991.  The “Stan Black Award,” established by the Foundation and funded by HBC, annually honors others like him who gave a lifetime of “time, treasure and talent” to the community.

Information on services, donations, and condolences to the family can be found here.