Bill C. Hetherington

Mediator | Arbitrator | Private Judge | Special Master | Attorney

Areas of Expertise -- Appellate, Aviation, Class Action, Commercial, Construction, Insurance & Bad Faith, Medical Malpractice, Oil & Gas, Personal Injury, Professional Negligence, Real Estate

View Bill's calendar or check preferred dates across our panel.
To schedule a mediation, please contact Angel:  angel@drc-ok.com


Bill Hetherington retired from the Judiciary on September 2, 2016, after having served a total of 28 years, 21 years as a Cleveland County general jurisdiction trial judge, and seven years on the Court of Civil Appeals (elected Chief Judge in 2015).  As a trial judge, he presided on over 400 jury trials, including complex class action and mass tort cases such as the State of Oklahoma Attorney General “Tobacco” litigation.    

Hetherington’s judicial career began in 1982 as a Special District Judge.  He retired from the bench and entered private practice in 1986 through 1991.  He was appointed District Judge, Office No. 1, Cleveland County, in 1992.  He was re-elected through five four-year election terms unopposed.  During his tenure as a District Judge, he served as Chief Judge, Judicial District 21 for six terms, and was elected by his peers as Presiding Judge of the South Central Administrative Judicial District serving in that capacity during 2001 and 2002.  Bill also served on the Executive Board of the Oklahoma State Judicial Conference for six years and as President of the Conference in 2000.

Bill has received special recognition for his Judicial administration of the Cleveland County Community Corrections Intervention system and for helping implement and oversee the Cleveland County Mental Health Court deviation program.


  • National Judicial College, 1983

  • Oklahoma City University School of Law, Oklahoma City, OK -- Juris Doctor, 1979

  • University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK -- B.B.A. Petroleum Land Management, 1970

Specialized Dispute Resolution Education and Training

  • Strauss Institute for Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine University -- 2016

 Judicial Achievements

  • Special District Judge, Cleveland County, Oklahoma - 1982 to 1985

  • Cleveland County District Judge, Office No. 1, Judicial District No. 21 – 1992 to 2009

  • Chief Judge, Cleveland County for six terms

  • Governor’s Commendation as Appellate Panel Member, Temporary Court of Criminal Appeals, Judicial District 21

  • Past President, Oklahoma State Judicial Conference

  • Presiding Judge, South Central Judicial Administrative District

  • Oklahoma Bar Association Judicial Conference Delegate

  • Member, Oklahoma State Judicial Conference Legislative Committee

  • Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals -- 2009 to 2016

  • Chief Judge Oklahoma Court of Appeals -- 2015

Professional Affiliations

  • Oklahoma Bar Association

  • Cleveland County Bar Association

  • Past Bar Member, United States District Court, Western District of Oklahoma

  • Past Bar Member, United States Tax Court

  • Master Member Emeritus/Past President, Luther Bohanon American Inn of Court

  • Past Executive Council, Cleveland County Bar Association

Civic Affiliations

  • Past Board of Directors, City National Bank and Trust Company of Norman

  • Past Board of Directors, Norman Regional Hospital Foundation

  • Past Board of Directors and Vice Chair, Cleveland County Citizen's Advisory Committee to Dept. of Human Services

  • Past Advisory Board Member, Norman Alcohol Information Counsel

  • Life Member, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association

  • Member, President's Associates Oklahoma University, OU Alumni Association and Sooner Club

  • Past Board of Directors, Norman Lion's Club

  • Past National Director and President, Norman Home Builder's Association

  • Past Co-Chairman, Norman Community Development Block Grant Program

  • Past Board of Directors, Norman Chamber of Commerce

  • Past Board Member, United Way of Norman

  • Past Officer, Norman Independent Insurance Agents Association

  • Past Senior Chairman, St. John's Episcopal Church Vestry Board

  • Current Board of Trustees Member, St. John's Foundation

  • Past Executive Council, Cleveland County Bar Association

  • Past Alumni Board of Trustees, OCU School of Law


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