During Alumni Weekend 2009, the Alumni Association of Case Western Reserve University announced the establishment of the Newton D. Baker Award for Outstanding Service to the University. Formerly given by the University’s Undergraduate Alumni Association, and last presented more than 5 years ago, the award honors the legacy of Cleveland’s Newton D. Baker, who urged everyone he met to volunteer time and talent in service to those in need.
The 2009 recipient is Charles R. Ault, (ADL '48, LAW '51). He has been a committed alumnus for half
a century, serving on the Law School Alumni Association Board of Directors and on the Law School Visiting Committee. When Charlie and his wife, Janice, tragically lost their son as a young lawyer they established The Jonathon M. Ault Mock Trial Team that helps train students in trial advocacy. They also created and funded The Jonathon M. Ault Symposium: Professional Responsibilityand Multi-Discipline Practice Conference, as well as an award presented at graduation. Anecdotes abound about Charlie’s contributions to the developmental
and emotional well-being of law students and to fund-raising efforts at the law school.
In addition to his involvement with the Law School, Charlie served on the Task Force that created the Alumni Association of Case Western Reserve University in 2005. Those who worked with him on the Governance Committee of the new Alumni Association describe Charlie as diligent, insightful, outspoken, a good and
wise advisor and counselor, and the member who was always able to remember what had evolved at earlier meetings. Charlie nearly independently drafted the bulk of the new alumni association Articles of Governance. At the time, Charlie was living in Arizona and served as the liaison of the Arizona regional chapter. His
contributions were critical to the successful and timely viability of the new alumni association.
Because Charlie was unable to be present during the Alumni Weekend Grand Classes luncheon and Alumni Association Annual Meeting, the award was presented to Charlie at his home at Laurel Lakes in Hudson by Recognition Chair Dr. Laura Nosek, (NUR ’61, ’81, GRS ’86) and Association Executive Director Daniel T. Clancy, (LAW ’62).
In accepting the award, Charlie said "I am truly overwhelmed by the presentation to me of the 2009 Newton D. Baker Award. What better expression to use than thank you when said, written, even sung, with sincerity and a warm, convincing voice! Laura mentioned the drafting of documents which was one of my principal responsibilities. I'm amazed at the volume of work that can be produced without even being paid--but the reward has come, and it is a beautiful engraved recognition piece which will be in our living room for a long time, or at least as
long as an 86-year-old can expect.
For those who don't know I practiced for over twenty years with Wendell Falsgraf and crew until we merged over the next twenty years with Baker Hostetler and Patterson, (now Baker & Hostetler) the firm founded by Newton D. Baker and Joe Hostetler in l9l6. Baker was involved in Cleveland affairs as well as political matters. He was also a great supporter of Western Reserve University. Being connected as we now are by this reward is an honor of which I am very proud."