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Atty Howard Walton receives award for professionalism

Professionalism award chair Al Schraeder and Akron Bar president Mike Robinson flank Professionalism Award recipient Howard Walton. Legal News Photo by Ashley C. Heeney

ASHLEY C. HEENEY
Legal News Reporter

Published: October 24, 2011

On Tuesday, Attorney Howard Walton joined the ranks of 15 lawyers in the Akron Bar Association who have received the prestigious Professionalism Award.

However, Walton is unique because in the group of 14 men and one woman award’s recipients, he is the first lawyer in the practice of family law.

Attorney Al Schraeder, chair of the bar’s professionalism committee, said there are areas of law where it’s easier to be professional, and domestic relations happens to be contentious and emotional, yet Walton keeps his cool.

If anyone knows the professionalism recipients, bar president Mike Robinson said, “you know they have never raised their voice, never late and they are a credit to the legal profession.”

Domestic Relations Court Judge Carol Deszo added that Walton, who has appeared in her court more than she can count, has not only met the responsibilities of practicing professionalism, but has exceeded the bar.

“If you can’t work on a case (with Walton) you can’t work with anyone,” she said.

The Brooklyn-Queens-Long Island NY native Walton said he looked to law school as a way to avoid the Army draft. His professor at Syracuse recommended he check out Stetson, Toledo and Akron law schools. Walton said, not knowing where Akron was located, he called its law school first out of alphabetical hierarchy then applied and was accepted.

After driving limos for a summer in NYC, he flew into Akron on a big Soap Box Derby weekend, 1967. The law firm Cherpas, Manos and Syracopoulos hired him as a law clerk in late 1968, early 1969, and after passing the Ohio Bar and training with the National Guard, he began practicing with that firm. The rest is history.

Those lawyers became his mentors, teaching him how to practice law “what I call the old-fashioned way,” Walton said.

Many of his mentors and law school classmates were present at the reception, and friend, The Hon. Mary Cacioppo, spoke in his honor. His mentee and colleague Magistrate Deborah L. Cahan of domestic relations court shared highlights on Walton’s career, stating that 17 years ago he became a certified mediator concentrating in matrimonial mediation.

He continues to mediate complex domestic relations disputes in Summit and nearby counties.


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