William Wales


William WalesCurrent Position:

Partner and Chairperson Agriculture & Food Practice Group


Barnes &Thornburg LLP Indianapolis, IN

What influenced your decision to serve on the Board?

I have a keen interest in the mission of UDM and particularly in its Jesuit, catholic approach to higher education. UDM played a major role in shaping my adult life and a feel a great responsibility to contribute to the mission and sustained success of UDM and in particular the Engineering School.

Biographical Profile:

William W. Wales is a partner in Barnes & Thornburg LLP’s Indianapolis, Ind., office, where he is a member of the firm’s Litigation and Corporate Departments and co-chair of the Agriculture and Food Practice Group. Mr. Wales, who previously served as Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary at Dow AgroSciences LLC, also assists agribusiness clients throughout the country. Mr. Wales focuses his practice on management of complex product liability and commercial litigation matters; commercial transactions, including mergers and acquisitions; and compliance issues. He also will work with high-technology growth companies on a variety of legal issues. Mr. Wales joined Dow’s Legal Department as a trademark attorney in 1980 after law school. During his time at Dow, he held a number of positions. He served in Dow’s Michigan Division Legal Department, was a senior attorney managing the Dow U.S.A. Human Resources Group, and was named regional counsel for the Dow United Kingdom/Ireland area. He returned to the United States in 1992 and was elected Vice President and General Counsel for DowBrands, and Vice President and Secretary of the DowBrands Board of Directors. In 1994, he assumed additional responsibilities as Vice President of DowBrands Human Resources and Public Affairs. Beginning in 1999 through 2012, Mr. Wales served as Dow AgroSciences' Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, as well as the Chair of the Dow AgroSciences Ethics and Compliance Committee. Prior to joining Dow, Mr. Wales spent eight years at Ford Motor Company as a research engineer. Mr. Wales earned his J.D. from the Michigan State University College of Law. He earned both his Master of Engineering and Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering degrees from the University of Detroit-Mercy. Mr. Wales is a member of the State Bar of Indiana, the State Bar of Michigan, the Indianapolis Bar Association and the American Corporate Counsel Association. He is admitted to practice in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. Deeply involved in the community, Mr. Wales is a board member, a member of the Executive Committee, and chairman of the Audit Committee for Noble of Indiana and is a member of the Advisory Board of the University of Detroit Mercy College of Engineering and Sciences.