Bill Hawkins: Role model, mentor, coach

News / June 15, 2022

Bill Hawkins is a standout mediator and trial attorney, motivating all around him through action and attitude – which is why he has just been honored with the Cincinnati Bar Association’s annual John P. Kiely Award.

The Cincinnati Bar Association’s Professionalism Committee presents the John P. Kiely Professionalism Award to an exceptional lawyer, one who possesses outstanding trial skills and demonstrates the highest degree of professionalism, civility and ethical standards. 

Over the course of his 44-year career, Bill Hawkins has tried scores of civil and criminal cases, honing his trial skills while demonstrating exactly the characteristics that this award honors.

His work as a highly successful mediator, arbitrator and litigator has cemented a well-earned reputation for cooperation, collaboration and respect toward everyone. In the past year alone, Bill has mediated 39 cases, more than 80 percent of which were resolved with his assistance.

Bill achieves success by being a keen observer and an active listener, and he draws on his deep trial experience to help him identify the key issues and interests of all parties in a dispute, guiding them toward common ground on which to build a mutually acceptable resolution.

“We are thrilled – but not surprised – that Bill has been recognized by the CBA with this illustrious award.  It celebrates his outstanding career as a seasoned litigator with client-side experience and a highly recognized mediation practice helping parties resolve complex disputes,” says Lauren Resnick.

Ashley Hess says the impact of Bill’s contribution to the Cincinnati office cannot be overstated. “Bill has been a key member of our team and a leader during the decade-plus period of strong growth BakerHostetler has had in Cincinnati.  Bill’s enthusiasm, depth of experience and strong connections in the region are invaluable. It’s wonderful to see Bill be recognized for his professional accomplishments and his many contributions to the community.”

Bill’s perpetual mentorship and his role as a key figure in BakerHostetler’s national coaching program have made an enormous impact on attorneys across the firm, including Nate Schacht, who went through the program himself, later stepping up to become a coach as well.

“Bill not only became a mentor to me, both with business development and managing my own practice, but he became a friend who was always willing to pick up the phone and be a sounding board,” Schacht says. “I know Bill has impacted the practices and lives of numerous BakerHostetler colleagues, and I cannot think of anyone more deserving of this award.”

Carrie Dettmer Slye agrees. She says working with Bill over the past decade has been a pleasure, personally and professionally. His mentorship has had an enormous impact on her own success, and the example he sets for ethical behavior has been equally powerful, she says. “It is rare to find a person more grounded and committed to doing the right thing.”

For years, Bill has been actively training newer trial lawyers in the community as well, taking part in the Cincinnati Bar Association/National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA) trial skills program, where he is also a faculty member.

“Bill represents the very best in our profession,” Resnick says. “He is a mentor to other lawyers, a business development coach and one of the kindest, most decent people I have had the privilege to call a colleague and a friend.”

Bill was presented with the John P. Kiely award on June 9 at Anderson Pavilion in Cincinnati.