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  • December 16, 2015

    Know an Outstanding Lawyer, Jurist, Legal Worker, or Law Student? Nominate Them for State Bar Recognition

    Do you know someone deserving of recognition for their public service work? Nominate them for an award – the deadline is fast approaching for 2016.

    Dec. 16, 2015 – The State Bar annually recognizes attorneys, judges, law firms, organizations, and law students who have made outstanding pro bono, public service, or public education contributions. If you know of an individual or organization that should be recognized, contact the State Bar by the end of the business day on Feb. 2, unless otherwise noted below.

    The awards needing nominations are:

    Lifetime and Outstanding Jurists Nominations Due Feb. 2

    The State Bar’s Bench and Bar Committee is seeking nominations for the 2016 Judge of the Year and 2016 Lifetime Jurist Achievement awards.

    • The Lifetime Jurist Achievement Award recognizes a jurist who has served more than one full term as a circuit court judge and has demonstrated outstanding, long-term judicial service during his or her years as a sitting judge. The nominee may currently hold a judicial position or be retired.

    • The Judge of the Year Award recognizes a sitting circuit court judge who has improved the judicial system during the past year by his or her leadership in advancing the quality of justice, judicial education, or innovative programs. High ideals, personal character, judicial competence, and community involvement are hallmarks of the award recipient.

    To nominate a judge, submit a nomination form, a letter outlining the judge’s accomplishments, and three to five letters of recommendation. More information and nomination forms are available on

    Submit nominations via email to, or via mail to: Bench and Bar Committee, Judicial Awards Subcommittee, c/o Kris Wenzel, State Bar of Wisconsin, P.O. Box 7158, Madison, WI 53707.

    Pro Bono Service Attorneys and Organizations Nominations Due Feb. 2

    The Legal Assistance Committee recognizes attorneys or organizations for their outstanding pro bono service. These awards may be given to honor attorneys in private, government, or corporate practice. Pro bono projects by private law firms, bar associations, or other organizations may also be recognized.

    Awards are given to recognize efforts that provide legal services to low- and moderate-income people, explore new ways to increase the accessibility of legal services, provide encouragement and assistance to others in improving legal services delivery, or promote pro bono service for Wisconsin lawyers. For more information and a nomination form, contact Jeff Brown at (800) 728-7788, ext. 6177, (608) 250-6177, or go to the online nomination form.

    Outstanding Public Interest Lawyer, Outstanding Public Interest Law Student, and Ryan Klesh Public Interest Legal Worker Nominations Due Feb. 2

    The Public Interest Law Section seeks nominations for:

    • The Dan Tuchscherer Outstanding Public Interest Law Attorney Award, which recognizes a lawyer who has demonstrated a selfless, lifetime commitment to working in the public interest, both inside and outside the field of law.

    • The Outstanding Public Interest Law Student Award for the U.W. and Marquette law schools. This award recognizes students with a demonstrated commitment to working in public interest and to helping others, who have exceptional volunteer work or activism in their community.

    • The Ryan Klesh Public Interest Legal Worker Award recognizes an individual who captures the essence of Klesh's selflessness, work ethic, and humor in working to seek justice for low-income neighbors, family, and friends.

    To make a nomination for one of these awards, write a letter about how that person fits the criteria above and send your nomination, along with the person’s resume, to State Bar Section Coordinator Megan Kenney at (800) 728-7788, ext. 6190, or (608) 250-6190.

    Public Education Attorney of the Year Nominations Due Feb. 2

    The Public Education Committee (formerly Law-related Education Committee) seeks nominations for the Public Education Attorney of the Year Award. This award honors an attorney who has demonstrated excellence in promoting and supporting statewide efforts to educate the public, encourage understanding and respect for the legal system, and foster appreciation of the rights and responsibilities of all persons under the law. Contact Katie Wilcox at (800) 728-7788, ext. 6191, or (608) 250-6191.

    WisLAP Volunteer of the Year

    The Wisconsin Lawyers Assistance Program (WisLAP) seeks nominations for the WisLAP Volunteer of the Year Award. This award honors a lawyer or judge who has provided confidential, meaningful assistance, educational outreach, or other volunteer service through the WisLAP program. There is no deadline for this award. Contact Linda Albert at (800) 543-2625, ext. 6172, or (608) 250-6172.

    Wisconsin Law Foundation Gordon Sinykin Award Nominations Due Feb. 2

    The Wisconsin Law Foundation seeks nominations for the Gordon Sinykin Award of Excellence, which recognizes a lawyer or organization for work on an individual law-related education or public service project in the preceding year. To make a nomination, contact Beth Drake at (800) 728-7788, ext. 6171, or (608) 250-6171.

    Senior Lawyers Division Leonard L. Loeb Award Nominations Due Feb. 15

    The Senior Lawyers Division (SLD) seeks candidates for the annual Leonard L. Loeb Award. Nominees must be 60 years or older, have improved the legal system, and shown leadership in advancing the quality of justice for all. The award recognizes a lawyer who has made significant contributions to the legal community, has shown respect for the legal system, and has demonstrated a love for the law and what it seeks to accomplish.

    Nominees considered will demonstrate the following: 1) has made significant contributions to the legal community; 2) has shown respect for the legal system; 3) has demonstrated a love for the law and what it seeks to accomplish; 4) has high ideals and personal character; 5) has involvement in community organizations; and 6) has participated in local and State Bar activities.

    For more information, visit the SLD webpage on or contact Jerry Vang at (800) 444-9404, ext. 6181, or (608) 250-6181. The deadline for nominations for this award is Feb. 15, 2016.

    Awards Presentation Celebration is June 16

    The awards will be presented at the Member Recognition Celebration at the 2016 State Bar Annual Meeting & Conference in Green Bay. The conference is held on June 16-17, 2016.

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