Frank Leone

Retired Partner

Frank Leone worked as an associate and then as a partner at Hollingsworth LLP from his University of Virginia Law School graduation in 1985 to his retirement in 2021. His broad complex litigation practice encompassed environmental law, common carrier liability, investigations, and defense of toxic tort, consumer product, asbestos, and pharmaceutical products liability claims.

With special expertise in environmental litigation and counseling, including issues relating to Superfund, natural resource damages, hazardous waste, hazard communication, groundwater, surface water, wetlands, clean air, state environmental laws, and environmental auditing, Frank also litigated parallel tort actions seeking personal injury, property damage, and/or medical monitoring damages. He has successfully defended such cases whether filed individually, as part of a mass tort, or as a class action.

Frank served as counsel for Norfolk Southern in Avondale Mills v. Norfolk Southern, the then largest single mass tort case in South Carolina history. Plaintiff Avondale alleged property damage to its textile plants arising from a January 2005 train derailment and chlorine release. Frank led the defense of scientific issues in the case and participated in the month-long trial, which preceded a confidential settlement.

Frank’s litigation experience also included representing a large manufacturer in multiple state CERCLA enforcement actions, NRD recovery actions, and related personal injury/property damage cases in New York, North Carolina, and South Carolina. He defended Consumer Product Safety Act litigation, including penalty cases and one that was resolved through an unprecedented joint industry-wide/CPSC mediation. Frank also defended numerous clients in asbestos personal injury and property damage claims, including a client’s Havner challenges in connection with the consolidated Texas statewide asbestos docket and defense of civil conspiracy and other collective liability claims.

Named in the 2021 edition of Best Lawyers for Environmental Law, Environmental Litigation, and Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions-Defense, and in the 2021 edition of Super Lawyers for Environmental Litigation, Frank was a member of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys, the National Association of Railroad Trial Counsel, the International Consumer Product Health and Safety Organization, and the Product Stewardship Society. He is a contributing author of the Product Stewardship Society’s forthcoming Professional Practices of Product Stewardship and has presented at the group’s annual meeting. He served as a Board member of the Chesapeake Legal Alliance from 2019 to 2021.

Having worked in the Offices of the Virginia Governor and Attorney General, Frank served as a Virginia member of the Democratic National Committee, including on its Credentials Committee and Rules & Bylaws Committee. He served as Virginia State Counsel for Biden for President 2020.


University of Virginia School of Law (J.D., 1985) University of Virginia (B.A., 1982, with distinction)


  • District of Columbia


  • Super Lawyers, Environmental Litigation, 2021
  • Best Lawyers in America, Environmental Law, Environmental Litigation, and Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions-Defense, 2021


  • District of Columbia Bar, 1986-Present
  • Commonwealth of Virginia Bar, 1985-2020; Inactive status, 2021-Present
  • C. Preservation League Landmarks Committee, 2021-Present
  • C. Historic Districts Committee, 2021-Present
  • Democratic National Committee, 2008-2020, 2021-Present
  • DNC Rules & Bylaws Committee, 2017-2020, 2021-Present
  • DNC Credentials Committee, 2009-2017
  • Chesapeake Legal Alliance, Board, Member 2019-2021
  • International Consumer Product Health and Safety Organization, former Member
  • National Association of Railroad Trial Counsel, former Member
  • Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys, former Member


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