The Governor’s Award, designated as the Knoxville Bar Association’s highest award, is presented annually to an attorney who commands special respect from his/her peers. It is an award which cannot be sought and the recipient does not know he or she is being considered for same. It is given, not for any particular accomplishment, but for the outstanding professionalism shown by the recipient. In short, it is given not for what the attorney has done, but how it has been done.
On December 12, 2012, the award was presented to Thomas M. Hale. Tom was joined on the podium by his wife, Terri, and his children, Margaret, Tom, and Andrew.
The presenter described Tom as a very respectful and highly respected attorney. His polite but firm manner fosters credibility with other attorneys, judges, and clients.
Tom graduated from the University of Tennessee with a J.D. and M.B.A. Straight out of school, he began his practice with Kramer Rayson LLP, rising to be managing partner. His practice emphasizes commercial litigation. As an attorney, he has been President of the Knoxville Bar Association, President of Legal Aid of East Tennessee, and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Knoxville Bar Foundation. For the past three years, Tom has been President of the Knoxville Bar Foundation. For 15 years he has served as town attorney for the Town of Farragut, Tennessee. Tom was one of the lead attorneys defending Farragut, successfully, regarding annexation. He is listed in Best Lawyers in America and was named by Best Lawyer as Lawyer of the Year in the area of Real Estate Litigation in 2012. Further, Tom has volunteered as Counsel for LAET helping to negotiate collective agreements for those employed by the Association.
Tom has served as Senior Warden and Vice-Chancellor of the Episcopal Diocese of East Tennessee. The position of Senior Warden is the highest lay position in the Church, and Vice-Chancellor essentially serves as legal counsel. Tom is a devoted husband and father, and he enjoys tennis. Respectful, respected, polite . . . firm. Tom Hale is deserving of the Association’s highest award.