Congratulations Nicole Hessen!

On September 19, 1996 a horrible tragedy occurred in the workers' compensation community that most will never forget. An injured worker armed with a shotgun and a handgun burst into a workers' compensation defense firm in West Palm Beach, Florida. Attorney Kennie Edwards was shot and killed at age 38 leaving behind his pregnant wife and five year old son. The injured worker then shot and killed himself. Following this horrific event the workers' compensation community established the Kennie Edwards Award which is presented annually to the Workers' Compensation attorney who best exemplifies those professional qualities admired in Kennie: honesty, integrity, cordiality, good humor, high ethical standards and advocacy tempered by a sense of humility.

On Friday, February 28, 2014 the Palm Beach County Bar Association's Workers' Compensation Practice Committee presented the 2014 Kennie Edwards award to Nicole Hessen of Wender, Hedler & Hessen. I was lucky enough to receive a picture to include with this note, If it is viewable, that is Ms. Hessen and Judge Basquill at the awards. If it is not viewable, understand that I tried, but am apparently not smart enough to figure out how to place it in the posting. Technology is a never-ending challenge!

Past recipients of the Kennie Edwards Award are: Honorable Timothy Basquill, Jason Goldstone, Alison Schefer, Randy Porcher, Honorable Shelley Punancy, Michael Celeste, Lyle Platt, Michelle Leissle, Charles Williams, Lloyd Findler, Walter Beisler, Art Pumpian, David Rigell Michael McManus and Stan Narkier.


It is my honor to recognize Ms. Hessen on this recognition. It is also my honor to be reminded that there is trouble in our world and sometimes violence touches our lives. I never met Kennie Edwards, but I remember his death, and the way news of it spread through the state, like it was yesterday. I hope that in remembering his loss, we are all more thankful for what we have.


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