Ken Stephens Receives James B. Castles Leadership Award

Tonkon Torp founding partner Kenneth D. Stephens received the James B. Castles Leadership Award for 2015 from the Oregon State Bar Business Law Section. The annual award was established in 1998 and recognizes outstanding business lawyers who have made significant contributions to the public. Stephens is the second Tonkon Torp founding partner to receive the James B. Castles Leadership award. In 2000, it was awarded to the late Brian Booth.


Stephens, who retired in 2014, is a founding partner of Tonkon Torp. For over four decades, his practice focused on corporate financings and the secondary securities markets. Engagements in his final years of practice included mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance projects and investigations, shareholder disputes and take-over contests, as well as the formation of domestic and international joint ventures and consulting in securities litigation. In the 1970s, Stephens served as Assistant Counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs in connection with its Securities Industry Study.


Throughout his career, Stephens consistently provided leadership and committee service to his law firm, the legal profession and his community. In 2012, Stephens traveled to Riga, Latvia where he volunteered his time to teach an international business law course at the University of Latvia. He frequently served on Tonkon Torp’s managing board, including several terms as chairman. Between 2003 and 2014, Stephens provided close to 1,000 pro bono hours to a diverse range of clients. He is currently a board member for Portland Piano International.


“Ken was an extraordinary business lawyer who was a role model and teacher to countless lawyers – young and experienced alike. His dedication to civic engagement and service to his personal and professional community are also inspirational. Ken sets a fine example for all of us in the legal profession,” said Darcy Norville, Tonkon Torp managing partner. “We are proud that he is this year’s recipient of the James B. Castles award.”


A native of Eugene, Oregon, Stephens received a law degree and bachelor’s degree from the University of Oregon. He will be presented with the award at the Business Law Section annual meeting on November 5.

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