Phil Keating, Lawyer and Business Champion, Dies at 51

by ARLnow.com January 19, 2011 at 1:45 pm 3,085 15 Comments

(Updated at 3:40 p.m.) Phil Keating, a prominent figure in Arlington civic life, died suddenly last night at the age of 51.

Keating, an attorney with the Arlington firm of Bean, Kinney & Korman, just finished his term as the 2010 chairman of the Arlington Chamber of Commerce.

A New Jersey native, Keating earned his B.A. from Rutgers. He received his J.D., with honors, from George Washington University.

As an attorney, Keating represented business clients from individual entrepreneurs to large multi-national companies.

“He was just one of the best people you know,” said Leo Fisher, a managing partner at Bean, Kinney & Korman. “He was a very positive person, he had a great sense of humor… it was a pleasure to work with him.”

“We are absolutely stunned in disbelief,” said Takis Karantonis, director of the Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization, who worked with Keating on business issues related to the Pike. “This is a real loss for our community… he was a real civic champion.”

In addition to his work with the Chamber, Keating was a member of Arlington County’s Community Energy and Sustainability Task Force.

“It’s a little surreal that he’s not here today,” said 2010 county board chairman Jay Fisette, who ran in to Keating while eating lunch at a restaurant in Courthouse yesterday. “Our chairmanships coincided, and I got a chance to know him pretty well… He was very committed to the community as a whole, and that was reflected in his life and in his interactions.”

“Phil was filled with humor and compassion, and was a consensus-builder,” said Sun Gazette Managing Editor Scott McCaffrey, who worked with Keating as a member of the Chamber’s Executive Committee. “[He] used his year as chairman to push the Chamber of Commerce to continue as an engaged partner in government and economic affairs in Arlington and the region.”

Keating was married with three children, including a daughter who recently graduated from college, a son who’s an undergraduate at UVA and a daughter who’s a junior in high school.

  • Shan L

    How terribly sad and tragic for his family and friends! My thoughts and prayers go out to all of them during this very sad time!!

  • As a reminder, for obituaries we request that comments be limited to words of condolence or remembrance.

  • A brief tribute

    I am completely shocked by this news. Phil was a gentleman and a consummate professional, especially on civic & community matters pertaining to Arlington. This is an astounding loss. I am so sorry for his family and the many colleagues he had at Bean Kinney, the Chamber, and Arlington County.

  • Burger

    Wow! That is awful news. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and the Bean Kinney community.

  • Lou

    I only knew him through some of his writings on his firm’s blog, but he was obviously extremely bright and fair in what he wrote, and I’m sure that carried over from who he was as a person.

    My condolences.

  • Ingrid Morroy

    This is a tremendous loss for Phil’s family and for Arlington. Phil was well respected in Arlington, especially among the business community. My condolences to his family, friends and colleagues.

  • Oh-Four-Er

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I had no idea. This is a complete shock. I am so very sad to hear this news. He was an amazing person with a larger than life personality. Compassion, intelligence, humor, and a real community leader. To his family, know that our community truly appreciated him. This is a huge loss and our thoughts and prayers go out to you all.

  • After working with Phil at the Arlington Chamber of Commerce and currently at the Washington Business Journal, I am in complete shock with this news. Phil was a great man of character, wisdom, humor, and sensibility. He will be missed today and everyday into the future.

  • Peter D

    I’m one of Phil’s brother – in – laws and today is a very, very sad day. Phil was just as much of a gentlemen and great all around guy in the family as has been commented on by those who knew him through his civic and professional activities. Phil was well liked and looked up to by so many. Wise, funny, helpful and just a pleasure to have known in every way. We will miss you, Phil and my heart goes out to my sister and their kids.

  • Kathy

    So sad to lose someone so valuable who gives to society more than he takes. My condolences to his family and friends.

  • Phil is greatly admired by all who knew him. We here in the Arlington business community owe him a tremendous debt of gratitude. He exemplified what our community is all about.

  • Grace Abi-Najm Shea

    I am still speechless at the loss of Phil. He was a generous man that cared for his community with a beautiful family. My thoughts and prayers go out to his wife and 3 children. This is just so sad. RIP Phil, you will be missed.

  • Pingback: On the passing of Phil Keating : CPRO()

  • Jarrod, Harrison, Ava

    We will miss you Uncle Phil. We love you! Bye

  • Alanna,John,Shannon,Brady,Casey

    We will miss Phil so much. He was one of the nicest, most dependable, smartest, sincerest man, all around good guy, and wonderful father i have ever known. So lucky to have had him as a brother in law for almost 25 years. Phil will be forever loved and missed by so many. Our hearts break for my sister, their kids, and Phil’s sisters and brother.


Subscribe to our mailing list