Katherine Hopkins (“Kat”), 38

Name: Katherine Hopkins (“Kat”)

Family: My wonderful husband, Travis, and beautiful daughters, Maggie (5) and Lucie (1)

Hometown: Ennis, Texas

Age: 38

Company: Kelly Hart & Hallman LLP

Position: Partner

How do you choose to give back to the community? I enjoy serving on a number of boards and organizations in our community.  However, my favorite way to give back to the community is through pro bono service.  I believe it is very important for all attorneys to give back to the community and pro bono representation is such a rewarding experience for me.  I have served as counsel in many pro bono matters, including estate planning and family law matters as well as general advice clinics at venues such as The Presbyterian Night Shelter.  Notably, my first trial occurred in a pro bono divorce case where I represented the petitioner in successfully obtaining a divorce from her incarcerated spouse (who attended while wearing shackles and two sets of handcuffs).  At the end of the day, I hope my service as counsel provides a voice to members of our community that may not otherwise have access to and the benefits of representation.   

What advice would you give to yourself at age 15? 1. Above all, YOU deserve grace.  2. God has a plan for you and your life (even though you may not always understand it at the time). 

Where did your first paycheck come from? My first paycheck came from American Energy & Environmental Engineering, my father’s company.  I believe I was around 14 or 15 and worked there during the summer.  I would attend site assessments and assist with a myriad of tasks.  It was an interesting job that afforded me a bonding opportunity with my father while providing extra spending money.  

What other profession would you like to try? I would love to be a surgeon. I think the human body and its internal workings are very interesting. 

Tell us about an influential person in your life. How did they influence you and why are they important?  One very influential person in my life was my grandmother (“Grammee”).  Grammee was an amazing lady —kind, hard-working and incredibly supportive.  She had a can-do spirit that welcomed all regardless of background.  Her incredible cooking satisfied your hunger and her advice warmed your soul.  She taught me the importance of perseverance and dedication and giving yourself some grace.  She also implored me on the significance of lifting your family and friends because their success is also your success.   I so appreciate the time I spent with her.  Fun fact, my oldest daughter is named after her.

What did you want to be when you grew up? I was very active in the theatre and wanted to be an actress. 

What movie, TV show, book, stage play or video game influenced you growing up? During my junior year in high school I was cast as Saint Bernadette in the play, The Song of Bernadette.  For those not familiar, this play is about a young French woman who experiences vivid visions of the Virgin Mary.  While many dismissed her claims, others slowly begin to believe her and she is eventually deemed a saint.  My involvement in this play challenged me on so many levels—personally, emotionally, spiritually and physically as it was a requirement for me to dye my light blonde hair to brunette.  However, this role strengthened my faith, encouraged me to believe that the impossible may actually be possible and reminded me to always appreciate the good in each one of us.  All in all, it was a very positive experience that has continued to stay with me throughout the years. 

Tell us one thing about yourself that most people would be surprised to find out? I think people would be surprised to hear that one of my favorite things is a simple night at home.  While I am often on the go in so many areas of my life, I truly value quiet time at home with my husband and children.

What is your ideal vacation? My ideal vacation consists of my family and I relaxing on a beautiful beach- just listening to the waves crash against the beach, while hearing the sounds of my children and husband’s laughter.  Oh, and a pina colada would perfect the scene.

Favorite food or restaurant? My favorite food is lasagna and my favorite restaurant is Saint Emilion.  I adore both Italian and French food!

Favorite drink? Sparkling Water; Rose’

Favorite movie: The Breakfast Club and Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Favorite sports team: TCU Horned Frogs

Favorite song: “Beast of Burden” by The Rolling Stones

Tell us about your prop? I chose two props: (i) an aloe plant; and (ii) pom poms.  When I moved to Fort Worth in 2010, my parents gave me a small aloe plant for my condo.  Since then, that same aloe plant has multiplied, and I have transplanted hundreds of aloe plants on many occasions.  I have given these plants to friends, my daughter’s teachers, and colleagues.  Initially, this plant symbolized my love for nature, especially my love of gardening.  But, on a deeper level, it symbolizes my personal and professional growth.  The aloe plant is strong, resilient and hardy.  It is also fragile and vulnerable at times. Despite everything else, it continues to adapt and thrive.  The path of the aloe (and I hope, my own) is filled with growth, albeit not always perfect, but still evidencing progress. With respect to the pom poms, one of my dearest friends once told me, “You are everyone’s greatest cheerleader.”  Thus, the pom poms represent my intent to serve as a cheerleader for others.  I try my best to encourage my colleagues, friends and family on a daily basis and look for the positive in all situations and all people.  I have found that everyone benefits from having a cheerleader in their corner.  I hope to do my best in serving others, at a minimum, in that manner.