Elizabeth Watters ’90: Leading Columbus Bar Association
When Elizabeth J. Watters ’90 isn’t working as a litigation and employment lawyer, a Moritz Scholar mentor, or the new president of the Columbus Bar Association (CBA), she’s busy supporting the hobbies of her 8-year-old daughter.
“Her hobbies are my hobbies,” she said. “In June, it was softball. In July, it was swimming and the pool.”
Each day, Watters deftly juggles her professional obligations and career at the Columbus office of Chester Willcox & Saxbe, LLP with the demands of being a single parent and bar president. “As a single parent you’re doing it all,” she said.
At just 44, the newly elected CBA president believes she still has much to accomplish. “I’m hoping that my best years are still ahead of me in terms of complex cases, being able to assist individuals, and giving back to the community and the bar,” she said.
Watters looks toward her one-year term as bar president with excitement and pride. The Columbus Bar Association is the oldest bar in the State of Ohio and has over 5,000 members, “it is a tremendous honor to lead this organization.”
“This has been a seven-year journey,” she said. She served on the bar’s board of governors for four years before being elected as secretary treasurer and finally, president-elect. Watters attributes her steady involvement with the Moritz community to her success at the CBA and elsewhere.
“There have been a fair number of graduates of the College who have served as CBA president who are wonderful role models and mentors for me,” she said.
Watters, who has served on the Moritz College of Law National Council for 17 years and is a Past President of the College’s Alumni Society, is a loyal student mentor.
“This is my third time serving as a mentor to a Moritz scholar,” she said. “My mentee, Carson Barylak, was in several of the same student organizations that I was involved in as an undergraduate at Ohio State. It’s quite thrilling to see her progress through law school. She’s doing so well.”
Watters generously supports the College as well. Watters established an endowment directed at alumni development, with a particular focus on fostering the College’s relationship with recent alums. And her scholarship, the Elizabeth J. Watters Scholarship, recognizes students who were members of the undergraduate student-faculty service organization Ohio Staters, Inc. and Sphinx Senior Honorary at Ohio State.
Her heavy involvement with the College is hardly surprising. As an Ohio State undergraduate, Watters was “very, very involved.” “Even as a law student, I think most people would tell you I was overly involved,” she said.
Watters’ finds her volunteer and community work with Moritz richly rewarding.
“I have found that my relationship with the College and with its alumni has been one of the most beneficial things on a personal and professional level,” she said. “I see my service within the bar association as an extension of what I was taught in law school.”