Richard Pearson Larm, a prominent Justice Department attorney who influenced U.S. international trade and antitrust policy, died Aug. 5, 2021 at Bridgeport Hospital in Connecticut of Parkinson’s Disease. He was 76.
He was born May 20, 1945 in Minneapolis, Minnesota to Lorraine Pearson Larm, a mathematics educator at the Kent Denver School, and Fordyce A. Larm, an accountant with the firm of Peat, Marwick, Mitchel & Co. (now KPMG). He married Jona Countiss Vieta in New York City on Nov. 22, 1980.
Richard, or “Dick” as he was known to his friends and colleagues, was a product of the Denver public school system where he excelled in debate. After graduation from Thomas Jefferson High School, he went to Harvard College graduating Magna Cum Laude with a bachelor’s of arts degree in 1967 and continued to Harvard Law School graduating Cum Laude with a J.D. degree in 1970.
He was hired in August 1970 as an associate attorney at the New York law firm Donovan, Leisure, Newton & Irvine (the firm founded by “Wild Bill” Donovan who led the Office of Strategic Services for special operations during World War II). He spent much of this time working on a massive antitrust litigation impacting the antibiotics industry and co-authored with James R. Withrow the peer-reviewed article “The ‘Big’ Antitrust Case: 25 Years of Sisyphean Labor” published in 1976 by the Cornell Law Review.
His experience in antitrust law led to a public service career spanning more than 40 years for the U.S. Department of Justice in the Foreign Commerce Section of the Antitrust Division starting Feb. 23, 1976. He became one of the Antitrust Division’s longest serving attorneys, retiring on Oct. 3, 2016 after many years as the lead trade specialist at the Foreign Commerce Section.
“He was the Department of Justice’s representative to the interagency Trade Policy Staff Committee where he was greatly respected as a tireless advocate for consumer interests and developed critical expertise on trade measures (e.g., antidumping, countervailing duties), on commodities, and on various manufacturing sectors (e.g., aircraft, steel),” said Caldwell Harrop, Assistant Chief of the International Section of the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division.
“He also represented the DOJ at numerous General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and World Trade Organization negotiations in Geneva, covering the Uruguay and Doha rounds, offering his keen insights on intellectual property, government procurement, services, and trade remedies, among other topics.”
He worked on many antitrust litigations, investigations and trade negotiations involving international industries ranging from ball bearings, jet engines and telecommunications. He served as Deputy Staff Director for Complex Litigation for President Carter’s National Commission for the Review of Antitrust Laws and Procedures in 1978. He was commended by U.S. Trade Representative Carla A. Hills for his “outstanding contribution to the successful conclusion” of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1993.
Mr. Larm was involved for many years in negotiations for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership between the United States and the European Union. He was commended by U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick in 2002 for his “outstanding contribution” in negotiation of the Government Procurement Chapter of the U.S.-Chile Free Trade Agreement. He was a contributor to the Justice Department’s 2004 Task Force on Intellectual Property to combat growing international threats to intellectual property rights.
In 2011, he was part of a team that presented the Antitrust Division Award of Distinction in recognition of outstanding multilateral policy efforts that “have helped to transform antitrust enforcement around the world” that “has supported an unprecedented level of enforcement coordination on international cartels and mergers.”
He lived in Alexandria, Virginia for more than 30 years and was elected Senior Warden in 2007 by the Vestry of Saint Luke’s Episcopal Church. An avid reader, Mr. Larm’s interests included architecture, travel, political science and history.
Survivors include his wife, Jona Vieta Larm, a resident both of Fairfield, Conn., and New York City; his sister and brother-in-law, Marcia and Richard Chuvarsky, Denver; his niece, Camilla Chuvarsky, New York City; nephew, Mathew Chuvarsky, Yellowstone National Park, and several close cousins.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests the following; The John O Vieta Lecture and Prize Program Dept. of Surgery Lenox Hill Hospital 130 E 77 St. NYC 10075, St Luke’s Episcopal Church 8009 Fort Hunt Rd Alexandria, VA 22308, CT Center For Patient Safety 857 Post Rd #220 Fairfield, CT 06824, or Harvard College General Fund Harvard University PO Box 419209 Boston, MA 02241.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Richard Pearson Larm, please visit our floral store.
The John O Vieta Lecture and Prize Program, Dept. of Surgery Lenox Hill Hospital
130 E. 77th Steet, New York NY 10075
St. Luke's Episcopal Church
8009 Fort Hunt Road, Alexandria VA 22308
CT Center For Patient Safety
857 Post Road #220, Fairfield CT 06824
Harvard College General Fund
Harvard University, PO Box 419209, Boston MA 02241