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Law Grad Inducted into Aviation Hall of Fame

Albert M. Orgain IV, a 1971 graduate of the Washington and Lee School of Law, may be known first for his success as a trial lawyer. He is a principal with the Richmond firm Sands Anderson, and is listed in Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers of Virginia, among others.

But Al is equally well known for his love of flying. It is this passion that has resulted in Al’s election to the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame. He will be inducted on Nov. 13.

More than 100 Virginians have joined the Hall of Fame since it was founded in 1978. Inductees include pioneering explorer Admiral Richard Byrd and Vietnam War POW Commander Paul Galanti. When he is inducted this month, Al will join fellow 2010 inductees Edward Boyer, founder of Mercy Medical Airlift (Angel Flight), and George Lutz, a Virginia-based expert in aviation safety.

Al received his undergraduate degree from VMI and then flew a tour of duty as a combat gunship pilot in Vietnam before returning to Lexington to get his law degree at W&L. He has served as a helicopter section leader with the Virginia Army National Guard and has piloted his Cessna 182 Skylane throughout the region. Aviation law has been a major part of his law practice, too, and Al is known nationally for his skills in aviation accidents, especially wire-strike matters involving collisions between aircraft and surface-bound towers and cables.

He is immediate past chair of the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society (VAHS) and was for 20 years the chair of Sands Anderson’s Risk Management practice group.

In a video on the Sands Anderson website, Al makes his priorities clear: “If my lawyer partners don’t already know it, they should know now: I practice law so I can fly.”

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