John Hancock AM


John Hancock AM is a distinguished legal and business figure, renowned for his profound impact on Thai-Australian relations and the legal landscape in Thailand. As a Principal and Chairman of Baker McKenzie Bangkok for 35 years, Hancock was pivotal in transforming the firm into Thailand’s premier law establishment. His tenure was marked by comprehensive involvement in various aspects of foreign commercial activities in Thailand, showcasing his expertise in cross-border investments and transactions.

Hancock’s long journey with Baker McKenzie started in 1975 in New York, Hong Kong and then led to the establishment of the Bangkok office which he grew into Thailand’s largest law firm. Under his guidance, the Bangkok office expanded its foreign and Thai client base, pioneered international level training programs and internships for Thai lawyers and applied diversity in its hiring. In his later years he became an active member of Regional and Global management of the firm.

Following his retirement after an illustrious career at Baker McKenzie, Hancock didn’t slow down. He served as Honorary Chairman and Senior Advisor to Baker McKenzie, and Independent Director of several significant Thai listed companies, as well as providing strategic advisory services through his own John W. Hancock & Associates Ltd – offering invaluable local knowledge and support to a broad spectrum of international clients on their engagements in Thailand.

His experience over five decades as a resident of Thailand, and as a dual Australian-Thai national, has also included numerous roles and engagement with Thai government bodies, trade and educational institutions, thereby cementing his status as a vital link between Thailand and the global community.

Hancock’s contributions have extended significantly to fostering Australian-Thai relationships. He has also been a community figure, as a co-founder of the body which became the Australian-Thai Chamber of Commerce (AustCham) dedicated to assisting Australians in business dealings in Thailand, and as AustCham President. He also served as advisor to the Thailand Board of Trade and as a Board Member of the DFAT Australia-Thailand Institute.

His ongoing commitment is evident in his roles as Honorary Advisor to the Australian Alumni Association (Thailand) , and Honorary Member of AustCham, emphasising his dedication to creating and sustaining good person-to person , Australian-Thai, relationships. He also believes that there is a lot of scope for the activities, resources and needs of the very large and skilled Australian diaspora to be more fully appreciated, recognised and leveraged for mutual benefit by Federal and State Governments and all manner of Australian resident/non-resident nationals, and would like to contribute to advancing those causes.

His outstanding work in enhancing Australian-Thai relations earned him the prestigious Member of the Order of Australia (AM). Additionally, he received the President’s Award and Honorary Membership from AustCham, along with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Australian Alumni Association (Thailand).