Maine: An Encyclopedia
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Coffin, Frank Morey

(1919-2009) a U.S. Representative was born in Lewiston on July 11, 1919. Educated in Lewiston public schools; he graduated from Bates College in 1940, from Harvard Business School in 1943, and from Harvard Law School in 1947.

Coffin served in the Pacific Theater with the United States Navy as an ensign and later as a lieutenant 1943-1946. He was admitted to the bar and commenced the practice of law in Lewiston, Maine. He was a law clerk for the Federal judge for the district of Maine, 1947-1949.

Chairman of the Maine Democratic State Committee (1954-1956), he was elected as a Democrat to the Eighty-fifth and Eighty-sixth Congresses (January 3, 1957-January 3, 1961). He was not a candidate for renomination in 1960, and was an unsuccessful candidate for Governor that year.

Coffin was managing director of the Development Loan Fund until October 1961 when he became deputy administrator of the Agency for International Development and served until 1964. He was appointed to serve as United States Representative to the Development Assistance Committee of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris, France, 1964-1965.

Appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, October 2, 1965, he served as Chief Judge of that court from 1972 to 1983. Coffin retired from the court in 2006. He was been chairman of the U.S. Judicial Conference Committee on the Judicial Branch beginning in  1984. Coffin, who died December 7, 2009, was a resident of South Portland.

Additional resources

Coffin, Frank M. A Lexicon of Oral Advocacy. St. Paul, Minn. National Institute of Trial Advocacy. c1984.

Coffin, Frank M. Life and Times in the Three Branches. South Portland, Me. the Author. c2004-2010.

Coffin, Frank M. On Appeal: Courts, Lawyering, and Judging. New York W.W. Norton. 1994.

Coffin, Frank M. Speeches, 1960. (Cataloger Note: The collection contains the text of speeches given by Frank M. Coffin during his campaign for governor of Maine in 1960. The speeches date from March 13-Nov. 4, 1960, and were given on radio and television, as well as to civic groups, fraternal organizations, social clubs, etc.) [University of Maine, Raymond H. Fogler Library, Special Collections]

Coffin, Frank M. The Ways of a Judge: Reflections from the Federal Appellate Bench. Boston. Houghton Mifflin. 1980.

Coffin, Frank. Witness for AID. Boston. Houghton Mifflin. 1964.

Donovan, John C. “Congressional Campaign; Maine elects a Democrat.” New York. McGraw-Hill. c1960. (Eagleton Institute cases in practical politics, case 16.]

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