(May 5, 2021) – ELPO Law co-founding partner Whayne C. Priest, Jr. was presented today with the 2021 William H. Natcher Award by the Bowling Green-Warren County Bar Association during its annual Law Day Ceremony. The award is presented in recognition of Whayne C. Priest, Jr.’s career as a member of the Bar, during which he continuously demonstrated a commitment to high ethical standards and a strong devotion to professional and civic responsibility.
The William H. Natcher Award was established during the 1994 Law Day Ceremony for the purpose of annually memorializing the life and ideals of William H. Natcher and has been awarded each subsequent year since during Law Day Ceremonies. The award is presented annually to a retired or deceased member of the Bowling Green-Warren County Bar Association whose life exemplified Representative Natcher’s characteristics of humility and high ethical standards, his belief that the public interest be served over personal interests, and his desire to be adjudged by those he served simply as, “He did it right.”
Each recipient of the award is selected by the William H. Natcher Award Committee. The first recipient of the award in 1995 was made in memory of Judge John Barrett Rodes.
Whayne C. Priest, Jr. is a founding partner at English, Lucas, Priest & Owsley, LLP. He is a graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Law (1962), where he was a member of the Order of the Coif honor society and served on the Board of Editors for the Kentucky Law Journal in 1960-62 and as Associate Editor in 1962. Whayne earned his B.A. degree from the University of Kentucky in 1960, graduating with High Distinction and as a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
Whayne began his legal career in the U.S. Air Force where he served as a Judge Advocate General at Randolph Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas from 1962-65. After his military career, Whayne returned to Kentucky and served as the City Solicitor for Bowling Green for eight years. In 1973 Whayne became a founding partner of English, Lucas, Priest & Owsley, LLP.
During his more than 40 years of practice in Bowling Green and Warren County, Whayne tried cases throughout the area’s state and federal courts, argued cases to the Kentucky Court of Appeals, Kentucky Supreme Court, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. He also worked extensively with local government, private corporations and families in planning, developing and working within county and city zoning ordinances and assisting in the development and growth of Warren County and Bowling Green.
Whayne is a fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers, past President of the Bowling Green – Warren County Bar Association, and has served as the Chairman of the Editorial Board for the Kentucky Bench and Bar.