• Arizona Legal Legacies
  • Meet the legends behind the law – Interviews with Arizona attorneys

University of Arizona,
class of 1930

Featured Case:
Walker v. DeConcini
86 Ariz. 143 (1959) 341 P.2d 933

The child of a pioneer Arizona family, Ora Webster DeConcini was born near Thatcher, in Graham County. She attended Mormon schools, and Woodbury Business College in Los Angeles, and taught business courses at Gila Academy while still a student herself.  Upon completlon of a degree in Accounting and Business from the Unlversity of Arizona in 1930, she taught school in Tucson.

In 1932 Ora Webster met and married Evo DeConcini, who was just completing a degree in law.  In the years after their marriage, Evo's career and land development projects prospered. The family, which eventually included four children (Dino, Dennis, David and Danielle), moved From Tucson to Phoenix, and back again, as Evo served as Pima County Superior Court judge, State Attorney General, and Justice of the Arizona Supreme Court.  During this time,  Ora was active in political  and civic organizations, including the Tucson Fine Arts Board, the Symphony Women's Association, the Newman Foundation, and St. Joseph’s  Hospital. She served as a precinct committeewoman for the Democratic Party for thirty years, and was on the Democratic National Committee for eight years.  In 1978, she was named Arizona’s Mother of the Year.

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Bisbee High School,
class of 1926

Legal Secretary for
Sutter and Gentry
from 1937 - 1985

Elizabeth Kraker Daume was born in 1908, in Austria, while her mother was visiting relatives. The family moved to Bisbee in 1909, where her father worked for Phelps Dodge. Daume graduated from Bisbee High School in 1926 and worked as a bookkeeper for Phelps Dodge Mercantile. Then started working as the bookkeeper for the Southern Arizona Auto Company.

In 1937, Daume was hired by Fred Sutter and Jim Gentry to be the secretary for their law office. She managed the office, kept their personal financial records, handled much of the probate work, worked with the various lawyers who joined the firm, and hired and fired other secretaries over the years. In 1985, she retired after 47-1/2 years with the firm.

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University of California Berkeley Law,
class of 1951

State Bar of Arizona
member since 1952

Featured Case:
Stone v. Arizona Highway Commission
93 Ariz. 384 (1963) 381 P.2d 107

William P. Copple was born in Holtville, California, in 1916. He attended junior college for two years in Long Beach, California, followed by a year at the University of California at Berkeley. In 1936 he married and spent the next ten years working, first for the federal government at Boulder Dam and the Panama Canal, then in 1942 at a Kaiser shipyard in Richmond, California. He then spent two years working for his father’s construction firm, Copple Construction Co., in Yuma, Arizona. In 1948, at age 32, Copple returned to the university in Berkeley. In 1951 he graduated from the University of California's Boalt Hall of Law. Since Arizona had a one-year residency requirement before admission to the Bar, Copple worked another year in construction in Yuma.

Copple was admitted to the Arizona Bar in 1952, and became a partner in the Yuma firm of Westover, Mansfield, Westover, and Copple. In addition to his law practice during these years, he was active in civic affairs such as local and state Democratic Party politics, including one year as County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. In 1954 Copple was appointed by Governor Ernest McFarland to a four-year term on the Arizona Highway Commission, for which he served as Chairman in 1958. Copple was also a member of the Committee of Fourteen, the committee which advised the governors of the seven lower basin states on salinity problems in the Lower Colorado River Valley.

In 1965 Copple was appointed U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona, and in 1966 he became Arizona’s fourth judge on the U.S. District Court.

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University of Arizona Law,
class of 1946

State Bar of Arizona
member since 1946

Featured Case:
City of Tucson v. Citizens Utilities Water Co.

Thomas Chandler was born in Knowles, Oklahoma, in 1920. Both his mother and father were school teachers. The family moved often from town to town, primarily in Oklahoma and Arkansas, and by the time Chandler was in high school he had lived in fourteen or fifteen places. At age fifteen he came to Parker, Arizona, where he graduated from high school in 1938.

Chandler worked at various times on the construction of the Parker Dam until he graduated from the University of Arizona in 1942 with a B.A.

Since Chandler was unable to join the armed forces during World War II, he worked on the construction of Marana Air Force Base in 1943, until he decided to return to attend law school. He graduated from the University of Arizona Law School and was admitted to the Bar in 1948.

Chandler’s first job as a lawyer was for Evo DeConcini’s law firm. He was next hired by the firm of Darnell, Robertson and Holesapple. In 1952 he established his own firm in partnership with Charles Dennis McCarty. The firm of McCarty and Chandler has grown over the years to the firm of Chandler, Tullar, Udall, and Redhair of today.

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Northern Arizona University,
class of 1939
University of Arizona,

class of 1949

State Bar of Arizona
member since 1949

Featured Case:
State v. Thomas
81 Ariz. 124 (1956) 302 P.2d 261

Raul Hector Castro was born the twelfth of fourteen children on June 12, 1916, in Cananea, Sonora, Mexico. In 1926 the Castro family crossed the border into the United States and moved to Pirtleville, Arizona to escape political persecution. After graduating from Douglas High School in 1935, Raul Castro enrolled in the Arizona State College in Flagstaff, Arizona, where he received his B.A. in 1939, the same year he became a naturalized citizen.

After spending a few years traversing the country as a professional boxer, Mr. Castro went to work for the United States Department in Agua Prieta, Mexico, beginning in 1941. After five years, Castro enrolled at the University of Arizona College of Law in 1946. By 1949 Mr. Castro had received his LL.B., passed the bar examination and opened a law office in Tucson with David K. Wolfe.

In 1951, he was appointed to the Pima County Attorney’s Office and served under Robert Morrison and Morris Udall, becoming county attorney himself after running for the office in 1954. Mr. Castro was elected Pima County Superior Court Judge in 1958 and served until he was appointed, in 1964, by President Lyndon B. Johnson to be ambassador to El Salvador. He returned to Arizona and ran for governor in 1970.

In 1974, Mr. Castro defeated Russ Williams by five thousand votes and became the first Hispanic governor of Arizona. Three-quarters of the way through his term, he was aced by President James E. Carter to serve as ambassador to Argentina and held that post from 1977 through 1980. He has since returned to private practice in Phoenix in the law firm Castro, Zipf and Marable.

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