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About me

Adrienne Sepaniak King was born the oldest of four, in Detroit Michigan.  Her father was an aeronautical engineer and a Professor at the University of Detroit School of Engineering.  Her mother was a businesswoman and homemaker.  Adrienne graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from the U of D in 1969 with a major in biology and minor in chemistry.  Her mother, whose late brother had been a lawyer in Detroit, suggested she go to law school. There were very few women in law schools at the time, but the tide was slowly turning. 

Adrienne was one of only two women who were accepted in the first year class in the fall of 1969. Adrienne found she loved the ideas and problem solving skills inherent in the study of law. She was selected to serve on the law review as Articles Editor, the first woman to do so. She published in the school’s Journal of Urban Law November 1971 issue, an article entitled “Busing,  a Permissible Tool of School Desegregation. She was the first and only woman in her law school to be part of a Law Enforcement Assistance Administration grant to intern for the Wayne County Detroit Prosecutor’s office. She interned there for over a year, notably working under Patricia Boyle who later became a justice on the Michigan Supreme Court.  Her dual science and law background resulted in her being solicited to volunteer intern for Life of the Land, the environmental action group formed in Hawaii soon after President Nixon’s creation of the Environmental Protection Agency. 

Adrienne, taking after her adventurous grandparents, all four of whom left their native Poland for the U. S. before WWI, landed in Hawaii in May 1972, two weeks after graduation, not knowing a soul. Taking two bar exams that summer, the first in Hawaii, the second a month later in Michigan, she commenced working (for under $12,000/year), for the Honolulu Prosecutor’s office. She was the third woman hired. Those were exciting times to be working in the Honolulu Prosecutor’s office Adrienne recalls.  Hawaii was a happening place, which had achieved statehood only 13 years before. It was like being in a foreign country that wasn’t, with ideas and people of such variety and promise and energy in sharp contrast to the stagnation of Detroit. Criminally, the  “underworld” in Hawaii was in its heyday, with shootings and killings making front page news every other day, which made coming to work more fun than work. Starting out in traffic court, she was soon trying hundreds of misdemeanor cases, working up to trying over 3 dozen felony jury trials to verdict, with an over 75% conviction rate. She was the first woman in Hawaii to try a murder case. She obtained a conviction as charged. She was the first woman made “team captain” for Circuit Court felony cases with oversight responsibility for dozens of cases of those deputies assigned to work on her team.

           She left the Prosecutor’s office in 1976 to work for the City Corporation Counsel’s office. There, she handled more cases than she could count, and took over 2 dozen cases to trial obtaining verdicts in the City’s favor in almost 90% of those cases. She was the first woman to be named Assistant Chief of the Trials Division, when she left in 1985 to go into private practice with her husband, Samuel P. King, Jr.  Except for a brief return to the city as the first, and to this day, the only woman Chief of the Trials Division from 1990-1993, Adrienne and Sam have practiced together as King & King focusing on family law, limited personal injury and criminal defense cases.  She has successfully defended people charged with murder, rape, conspiracy, and theft in state and federal court. 


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Practice areas


  1. Divorce: 40%
    30 years
  2. Family: 30%
    30 years
  3. Personal Injury: 15%
    30 years
  4. Criminal Defense: 15%
    30 years



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Contact info

King & King, Attorneys-at-Law

735 Bishop St Suite 304
Dillingham Transportation Bldg.
Honolulu, HI, 96813-4817


MIActive And In Good Standing197305/14/2016
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
10 Best Attorneys for HawaiiAmerican Institute of Personal Injury Attorneys2015
Nation's Top 1%National Association of Distinguished Counsel2015
Presidential CitationWaikiki Rotary2014
Business Woman of the Year Finalist For-ProfitPacific Business News2012
Executive of the Year Family LawCambridge Who's Who2008
Community Service AwardFamily Law Section Hawaii State Bar Assn.2000
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
PartnerKing & King1985 - Present
Chief, Trials DivisionCorporation Counsel, City and County of Honolulu1990 - 1993
Asst Chief Trials DivisionCorporation Counsel City and County of Honolulu1976 - 1985
Deputy Prosecuting AttorneyDept. Prosecuting Attorney, City & County of Honolulu1972 - 1975
Association namePosition nameDuration
Family Law State Legislative Task ForceMember2006 - Present
Hawaii State Bar AssociationMember1972 - Present
ELKS Lodge 616Subordinate Forum Justice2013 - 2015
Hawaii Commission on the Status of WomenBoard of Directors2011 - 2013
Hawaii State Bar Association, Family Law SectionPast Chair2007 - 2008
Hawaii State Bar AssociationBoard of Directors1991 - 1992
Honolulu Zoning Board of AppealsChair1989 - 1992
Assn. of Plaintiffs Lawyers of Hawaii, (APLH)Board of Directors1988 - 1990
Hawaii Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (HACDL)President1987 - 1990
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
State v. Greenwell Cr. No. 4570 Third Circuitconviction
State v Tyrellconviction as charged
Awa v. Speese & City & County of Honolulu, Speese v Awa, Civ. No. 49626 First CircuitJury awarded money to Speese on the counterclaim against primary actor; award to secondary actor
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
Honolulu AdvertiserMcCain puts country first, has earned your vote2008
Journal of Urban LawBussing--A Permissible Tool of School Desegregation1971
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
University of Detroit Mercy School of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1972
University of Detroit Mercy School of LawBiologyBS - Bachelor of Science1969
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Rotary ClubFamily Law Practice2013
Program Chair/OrganizerCutting-Edge Legal Trends in Custody and Divorce2008