Frank J. Chmelik2023-03-22T10:26:20-07:00

Frank J. Chmelik


Frank Chmelik represents businesses and governments throughout Washington State.   As a long-time municipal lawyer, he routinely provides advice on municipal law including litigation, public contracting, public records and governance issues.   As an experienced business lawyer, he is the general counsel to many northwest Washington businesses, construction companies, and cooperatives providing a broad range of business and litigation advice.  As a well-respected environmental lawyer, he advises business and governments on regulatory compliance issues including stormwater and operational permits; on remediation of complex former industrial sites and sediment sites; and on recovery of remedial costs from other liable parties and historic insurance carriers.  Blending business, municipal, and environmental law, Frank has worked with businesses and governments throughout the State on redevelopment or repurposing of historically contaminated industrial Brownfield sites.  Frank was a legal member of the consulting team for the Department of Ecology that authored a report on Brownfield redevelopment.  Frank is the general counsel for the Washington Public Ports Association in Olympia, Washington where he authors a monthly column on municipal legal issues.

Frank Chmelik started his legal career as a U.S. Army JAG Corps officer where he served as a prosecutor and defense counsel at Fort Lewis.  He then worked for the Seattle law firm, Karr Tuttle Campbell. In 1987, he moved to Bellingham where he co-founded the firm.

Each year, since 1999, when the selection began, Frank has been chosen by Washington Law & Politics Magazine as a “Super Lawyer®” representing the top 5% of the lawyers in Washington.  Frank has served as a member of the American Bar Association’s House of Delegates and as a member of the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Military Law and in 2014,  he was elected a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation.


  • Claremont McKenna College (B.A., cum laude, Political Science
    and Economics, 1978)
  • Hastings College of Law (J.D., 1981)

Professional Associations & Memberships

  • Washington State Bar Association – admitted (1984)
  • Minnesota State Bar Association – admitted (1982)
  • California State Bar Association – admitted (1981)
  • United States District Court – Northern District of California
  • United States District Court – Western District of Washington
  • Fellow of the American Bar Foundation
  • Whatcom County Bar Association

Community Involvement

  • Bellingham Bay Rotary Club, Member
  • Mount Baker Chapter of the American Red Cross, Chair of Board
  • Bellingham YWCA, Member of the Board of Trustees
  • Former Volunteer Firefighter/EMT, Local fire district

Practice Areas

Business Law

Environmental Law





Office: 360.671.1796

Direct: 360.306.3001

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