Dick Hawke

April 10, 1951 - August 8, 2018

Dick practiced law for more than 40 years and was an important part of the lives of most clients and colleagues with whom he worked. He built his practice in estate planning, probate, elder law, tax (including complex estate tax valuation issues) and real estate. He died of cancer in 2018.

Dick was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, on April 10, 1951.  He graduated from St. Olaf College in 1973 and received his law degree from Boston University School of Law in 1976.  He came from a background of taxes and accounting, having assisted his father in his CPA practice before being admitted to the bar.  Taxes became one of Dick’s life passions. 

He was a member of the Governing Council of both the Elder Law Section and the Probate and Trust Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association (MSBA), Chair of the Federal Tax Law Committee of the MSBA’s Probate and Trust Section, and a member of the MSBA’s Real Property Section.  He is past Co-Chair of the Ramsey County Bar Association Tax Committee and past President of the Ramsey County Bar Foundation.  He was an officer and member of the Board of Directors of the St. Paul Youth Services Bureau, an active volunteer attorney with Legal Assistance and Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services (SMRLS).  He authored a chapter in the Elder Law Handbook published by Minnesota CLE every year since 2002 on the Minimum Distribution Requirements for Retirement Accounts and was a member of the planning committees for the Annual Elder Law Institute and the Annual Tax Conference.

In 2005, Dick received the Minnesota State Bar Association’s David Graven Public Service Award for his service on the MSBA Katrina Relief Task Force, a 2006 recipient of the Mary Alice Gooderl Memorial Award presented by the Elder Law Section of the MSBA for outstanding contributions to the field of elder law, a 2016 inductee into the Elder Law Hall of Fame, and in October 2018 he was posthumously awarded the MSBA Elder Law Section Lifetime Service Award.

He had a quirky sense of humor that some would describe as “dad humor."  A great example would be the preamble in his Last Will and Testament, in which he says “I…intend never to die.   However, my able assistant keeps reminding me that this is not necessarily in the cards…”  He bantered back and forth relentlessly with his assistant, Robyn.  She will always cherish that special professional relationship.

He loved spending time with his family at their timeshare up North each summer, where he served many years on the Board of Trustees for the timeshare owners’ association.  In his younger years he enjoyed snow skiing and sailing.   He was an avid Twins fan and patron of the arts, particularly in St. Paul.

Dick started Hawke Law in 2017 so that his law practice and legacy could be continued. He is sorely missed by all who knew him.