The Donoho School selects an Alumnus/Alumna of the Year annually to recognize a graduate who has distinguished himself/herself through achievements since graduating from Donoho. Past recipients have excelled in business, academia, medicine, and service. Our 56 past recipients epitomize the values of our mission, and we are very proud to announce this year’s recipient, Mr. Bill Lawrence ‘85.
While at Donoho, Mr. Lawrence excelled in academics as well as school athletics. He ranked in the 90th percentile for both the NEDT and the PSAT and played varsity soccer and varsity tennis, lettering in both each year. He received sportsmanship awards, Best Defensive Player, and Most Valuable Player awards all in soccer. From Donoho, he attended Auburn University where he was named to the Dean’s List more than ten times and graduated with a B.A. in Psychology and minor in Political Science. Mr. Lawrence continued his studies at Cumberland School of Law, Samford University. He received his Doctorate of Jurisprudence and was named a Cordell Hull Teaching Fellow at the Cumberland School of Law, a position named after alumnus Cordell Hull who was President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Secretary of State and a Nobel Peace Prize recipient. He was also awarded membership on The American Journal of Trial Advocacy, which is the United State’s oldest law review dedicated to the advancement of trial advocacy and is based upon academic record in law school.
Mr. Lawrence began his career as a Judicial Clerk for the Honorable Robert B. Propst, Senior United States District Judge for the Northern District of Alabama. For the last twenty years, he has served in Birmingham, currently an attorney practicing at Burr & Forman – a southeast regional law firm with more than 350 attorneys and 19 offices in Alabama, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North & South Carolina, and Tennessee. His emphasis is focusing on wireless telecommunications as well as business practice focused on representing publicly and privately held companies in a wide range of matters.
We hope all of our Donoho graduates become lifelong learners while working to better the community around them, and Mr. Bill Lawrence is an outstanding example of this. Mr. Lawrence has been published in major law journals over the last fifteen years and has won numerous awards and honors, such as being named to Best Lawyers rankings of the Best Lawyers in America for four consecutive years (2016-2019) in the Corporate Law category and three consecutive years (2017-2019) in the Business Organizations category. Awarded Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Peer Review Rating, which is the highest peer rating and one that only 10% of all attorneys reach. This more than a century old rating signifies that a lawyer’s peers rank the lawyer at the highest level of professional excellence for his legal knowledge, communication skills, and ethical standards.
On top of his professional life, Mr. Lawrence volunteers in his community by serving on multiple boards of directors and is a two-time recipient of the American Heart Association’s “Outstanding Service Award.” He is also a founding member of the Junior Board of Directors of Alabama Landmarks, Inc. which owns and is dedicated to the preservation and renovation of The Alabama Theatre and Lyric Theatre in downtown Birmingham. What a great example and testament to The Donoho School he truly has shown to be!
Mr. Lawrence is the son of Mr. Fred Lawrence and the late Mrs. Alice Lawrence of Anniston. He resides in Birmingham with his wife and fellow ‘85 classmate Karen, his son Cameron, and his daughter Meghan. Please join us in congratulating Mr. Bill Lawrence, Class of 1985, as The Donoho School 2019 Alumnus of the Year.