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Robert J. Hawley

MLRC First Amendment Leadership Award Recipient, 2012

Bob_Hawley_cropped_-_sized_for_webBob Hawley recently retired from The Hearst Corporation after nearly 30 years of service in its Office of General Counsel.  Bob was a director of the Media Law Resource Center, then called the Libel Defense Resource Center, from 1993 through 1995.  As a director he worked closely with Harry Johnston, LDRC’s Chair, to coordinate the transition of LDRC to its current organizational structure.  Perhaps his crowning achievement was to help recruit Sandy Baron, who started as LDRC’s Executive Director in 1994.

Bob succeeded Harry as Chair of LDRC and served in that capacity from 1996 through 1998.  It was during that period that LDRC took its first steps in international media law.  LDRC held its first overseas conference in Moscow in 1996, and held the first conference in London in 1998.  After stepping down from the Board, Bob continued to be active in the planning and organization of the MLRC London Conference.  Held biennially, it has become a major international media law event, drawing media defense lawyers from around the world to discuss the latest developments in libel, privacy, newsgathering, and media IP laws.

In 2010, thanks to the generous support provided by Hearst’s pro bono program, Bob was able to return to MLRC while continuing to be a member of the Hearst legal department.  For nearly two years, he worked as a full-time MLRC staff attorney, writing articles and assisting with MLRC’s many programs and projects.

Bob is a graduate of the University of Michigan and received his J.D. from George Washington University.   Prior to joining Hearst, he worked as a litigation associate with Shea & Gould, and as a law clerk for Judge Irving Ben Cooper in the Southern District of New York.

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