Gordon L. Nash, a securities lawyer who served for more than 30 years as legal counsel to the American Stock Exchange in New York City, died Oct.17 at the Methodist Home in Washington. He was 85.

The cause was prostate cancer, said a son, Stuart Nash.

Mr. Nash was a partner at the New York City law firm Lord Day & Lord before joining the stock exchange in 1988 as the senior executive vice president for legal and regulatory affairs, the exchange’s chief legal and regulatory officer.

At the American Stock Exchange, he helped create and secure regulatory approval for the first index and exchange-traded funds before retiring in 1993.

Shortly after his retirement, he moved to Old Town Alexandria, and he settled in Washington in 2012.

Gordon Lewis Nash was born on a dairy farm in Ionia, Mich. He was a 1951 graduate of Michigan State University and a 1956 graduate of the University of Michigan’s law school. He served in the Air Force during the Korean War and retired from the Air Force Reserve in 1958 at the rank of captain.

His wife of 40 years, Beverly Jensen Nash, died in 2003. Survivors include a son, Stuart Nash of Washington; a sister; and three grandchildren.

— Megan McDonough