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About This Year's Recipient

Thomas G. Knoll
51st Bert A. Polsky Humanitarian Award recipient

Tom KnollThomas G. Knoll is the co-founder of Akron-based law firm Stark & Knoll, where he advises clients in corporate, real estate and nonprofit law. His career as an attorney has spanned more than 50 years, benefiting businesses and nonprofit organizations throughout Northeast Ohio. 

In addition to serving the nonprofit community through his law practice, Knoll is well-known for his personal philanthropy and extensive charitable work. He is the co-founder of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Summit, Medina and Stark Counties and First Tee of Greater Akron. He and his wife, Ginny, have also served as co-chairs of several charity campaigns, including the 2018 Summa Health Sapphire Ball and Habitat for Humanity’s “A Home of Our Own” capital campaign, which raised more than $2 million to purchase a new facility in Akron. 

Knoll was instrumental in the creation of Leadership Akron’s N.E.X.T. program, which engages retired executives in key community leadership roles. He has served on the boards of nearly two dozen nonprofit organizations, including Akron Community Foundation, GAR Foundation, Goodwill Industries of Akron, the University of Akron Foundation, and Boy Scouts of America Great Trail Council. 

In 2015, he and his wife established the Tom and Ginny Knoll Family Fund of Akron Community Foundation, a donor-advised fund that provides grant support to many of their favorite nonprofits, including the United Way of Summit County and Akron Rotary Camp for Children With Special Needs.  

Knoll has received many prestigious awards for his humanitarian work, including the Sir Thomas More Award from the Akron Bar Association and the H. Peter Burg Award from the Greater Akron Chamber. He is a past president and member of the Akron Bar Association and a member of both the Ohio State Bar Association and the American Bar Association. Knoll is a graduate of The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law.