ABA mourns James Dimos, deputy executive director, general counsel

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James Dimos

James Dimos, deputy executive director and general counsel for the ABA, died suddenly Wednesday.

James Dimos, the ABA's deputy executive director and general counsel, died suddenly Wednesday.

ABA Executive Director Jack Rives shared the news in an email to staff, saying that he had been notified by Dimos’ wife, Kathy. An ABA press release is here.

“We are devastated by the loss of Jim Dimos,” Rives said in a statement. “He was a big man with a great vision and huge accomplishments. His contributions to the legal profession over more than three decades will endure. We will do our best to carry on his unfinished business. We miss him terribly.”

ABA President Patricia Lee Refo also described Dimos as “a dedicated member and leader of the American Bar Association who believed in fairness and justice for all.”

“He was an accomplished lawyer but, more importantly, he was a devoted father and husband and a dear friend,” she said in a statement. “He will be deeply missed by us all.”

Dimos joined the ABA as the deputy executive director five years ago and has since served as “second in charge” of its staff. He was directly responsible for several areas, including Membership, the Professional Services Division, Legal Education and Admission to the Bar, the Center on Public Interest Law, strategy development and the operations of the association’s Chicago and Washington, D.C. offices.

“He was the guiding force of the development and deployment of our new value proposition,” Rives said in his email.

Dimos also assumed the role of the ABA’s general counsel in September. Prior to his tenure with the association, he served in private practice for nearly 30 years. He focused on intellectual property, competition and media law and represented several Fortune 100 companies in the technology and media industries.

During that time, he was an active volunteer in the ABA. He served on the Board of Governors and from 2012-2013, served as chair of its Finance Committee and as a member of its Executive Committee.

Dimos served on several other association committees, including the Standing Committee on Audit; Standing Committee on Membership; Standing Committee on Publishing Oversight; Standing Committee on Technology and Information Systems; Standing Committee on Public Education; Standing Committee on Silver Gavel Awards and Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service.

He additionally served as president of the Indiana State Bar Association and Indianapolis Bar Association and as a member of the Indiana Supreme Court’s Pro Bono Commission.

Rives called Dimos a “tremendous, loving family man” who was proud of his wife and their three children, Stephanie, Jennifer and Jonathan.

“His family always brought a smile to Jim’s face and to his heart,” he said.

The ABA Fund for Justice and Education is accepting donations in Dimos’ memory here.

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