Cooke, Walter P - Erie County

WALTER P. COOKE, of the law firm of Kenefick, Cooke & Mitchell, is an eminent member of the Erie County Bar, who has for the past twelve years practiced his profession in Buffalo. In our day, the rapid extension and increasing complexity of business have led to the identification of lawyers, to a greater degree than ever before, with the enterprises of industry and finance, and the career of Mr. Cooke, furnishes an example in point. Besides carrying on a general law practice he is a Director in a number of banking and other corporations. He is an able legal practitioner, of conservative character and sound methods, and stands high in the esteem of the community.

Mr. Cooke was born in Buffalo April 28, 1869. After receiving the elements of education in the Buffalo public schools, he entered Buffalo High School, where he was prepared for Cornell University, from which institution he was graduated in 1891. The following year he was admitted to the bar, and in 1895 began the practice of his profession, later becoming a partner in the firm of Bissell, Carey & Cooke. Its successors are Kenefick, Cooke & Mitchell, Mr. Cooke's present firm. Messrs. Kenefick, Cooke & Mitchell form one of the best-known legal firms in this part of the State. They have an extensive general practice, and represent as legal advisers a number of important corporate interests. Though he has not specialized his professional pursuits, Mr. Cooke is prominent in railway law, and often acts as counsel for estates, and his protection of the interests of his clients is typical of the conscientious lawyer who realizes to the full the practical responsibilities and the ethical obligations of his profession.

Mr. Cooke has never sought the honors or emoluments of political life. He finds in his profession ample scope for his ambitions, and while some of his pursuits belong rather to the general field of business than the strictly professional province, yet all are in greater or less degree identified with the duties of a lawyer.

Among the positions of responsibility and trust filled by Mr. Cooke at the present time, may be mentioned his directorships in the People's Bank of Buffalo, the Buffalo General Electric Company, the Western New York Water Company, the Buffalo Abstract and Title Company, the Security Safe Deposit Company, the Buffalo & Susquehanna Railway Company, and the Great Southern Lumber Company. He is also a Trustee of the Buffalo Library, and Chamber of Commerce, and has served as a member of the Board of Managers of the Buffalo State Hospital, as President of the Cornell Alumni Association of Buffalo (1906-1907), and as Trustee of the Buffalo Homeopathic Hospital. In 1905 he was President of the Erie County Bar Association. He is a member of the Buffalo, Saturn, Ellicott, Country, Park and Liberal clubs.

A man of courteous, unaffected manners and of genial disposition, Mr. Cooke is popular in social life. He possesses in equal degree the confidence of his brethren of the bar and of the general public.

SOURCE: Memorial and Family History of Erie County New York; Volume I