About the Bar

Chief Justice Thomas O. Marshall Professionalism Award

Presented by the past presidents of the State Bar of Georgia
Contact: Sharon Bryant, sharonb@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Annual Meeting

The Chief Justice Thomas O. Marshall Professionalism Awards, presented by the Bench and Bar Committee of the State Bar of Georgia, honors one lawyer and one judge who have and continue to demonstrate the highest professional conduct and paramount reputation for professionalism.

Commitment to Equality Awards

Presented by the Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession
Contact: Sharon Bryant, sharonb@gabar.org
Presented in May

The Commitment to Equality Awards, presented by the Committee to Promote Inclusion in the Profession, recognize the efforts of lawyers and legal employers who are committed to providing opportunities that foster a more diverse legal profession for members of underrepresented groups in the state of Georgia. These awards are presented to lawyers who not only personally excel in their own practice, but who have demonstrated a commitment to promoting diversity in the legal profession. The Randolph Thrower Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes an outstanding individual who has dedicated his or her career to these causes.

  • Randolph Thrower Lifetime Achievement Award

  • Commitment to Equality Awards

Distinguished Service Award

Presented by the president of the State Bar of Georgia
Contact: Sharon Bryant, sharonb@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Annual Meeting

This is the highest accolade bestowed on an individual lawyer by the State Bar of Georgia. The recipient is honored for "conspicuous service to the cause of jurisprudence and to the advancement of the legal profession in the state of Georgia."

Justice Robert Benham Awards for Community Service

Presented by the Chief Justice's Commission on Professionalism and the State Bar of Georgia
Contact: Nneka Daniel, nneka@cjcpga.org
Presented in February

Judges and lawyers meet the criteria for these awards if they have combined a professional career with outstanding service and dedication to their communities through voluntary participation in community organizations, government-sponsored activities, or humanitarian work outside of their professional practice. Contributions may be made in any field, including but not limited to: social service, faith-based efforts, recreation, education, sports, the arts, politics and youth mentoring.

Employee of the Year Award

Presented by the executive director or general counsel of the State Bar of Georgia
Contact: Sharon Bryant, sharonb@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Annual Meeting

This award honors a staff member of the State Bar of Georgia who distinguishes himself or herself by being dedicated to carrying out the ideals of the Bar.

Local Bar Awards

Presented by the Local and Voluntary Bar Committee
Contact: Stephanie Wilson, stephaniew@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Annual Meeting
Nomination Period: January-early May

  • Award of Merit

    Awards of Merit are given to voluntary bar associations for their dedication to improving relations among local lawyers and devoting endless hours to serving their communities. The bar associations are judged according to size.

  • Law Day Award

    In 1961, Congress declared May 1 as Law Day USA. It is a special time for Americans to celebrate their liberties and rededicate themselves to the ideals of equality and justice under the law. Every year, voluntary bar associations plan Law Day activities in their respective communities to commemorate this occasion. This award will be presented to voluntary bars that provide the best Law Day activities.

  • Best New Entry Award

    One or more awards will be given to associations entering the Award of Merit or Law Day Award competitions for the first time within the last four years. This award will be based on excellence of the entry and the judges reserve the right to determine whether the award should be a single award, or one presented in each category, depending primarily upon the degree of new participation. (No separate entry in this category is needed. The committee will make a final determination based on all entries.)

  • Newsletter Award

    This award is presented to voluntary bars that provide the best informational source to their membership.

  • Website Award

    This award is given to bar associations with websites that exemplify excellence in usefulness, ease of use, content and design in meeting the needs of the website's targeted audience.

  • The President's Cup

    The judges will recommend to the Bar president an award of a traveling President's Cup to the most outstanding local or voluntary bar association from within all membership categories. The State Bar president will have the final decision on this award. Any bar association that submits an entry in any category, with the exception of the Thomas R. Burnside Excellence in Bar Leadership Award, is eligible for the President's Cup. (No separate entry in this category is needed. The committee and State Bar president will determine the recipient.)

Section Awards

Presented by the Sections of the State Bar of Georgia
Contact: Derrick Stanley, derricks@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Annual Meeting

These awards are presented to outstanding sections for their dedication and service to their areas of practice, and for devoting endless hours of volunteer effort to the profession.

  • Section of the Year

  • Section Awards of Achievement

Tradition of Excellence Awards

Presented by the General Practice & Trial Law Section
Contact: Derrick Stanley, derricks@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Annual Meeting

The "Tradition of Excellence" Award is awarded to four outstanding members of the General Practice & Trial Law Section: one plaintiff lawyer, one defense lawyer, one general practice lawyer and one judge. The awards are presented at the State Bar's Annual Meeting.

Marshall-Tuttle Award

Presented by the Military Legal Assistance Program Committee
Contact: Norman Zoller, normanz@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Midyear Meeting

The Marshall-Tuttle Award is presented by the Military Legal Assistance Program Committee annually to one lawyer who provides outstanding legal assistance to service members and veterans. It is named in honor and memory of Army Cpl. Evan Andrew Marshall of Athens, Ga., who was killed in action in 2008, and in honor and memory of U.S. Circuit Judge Elbert Parr Tuttle.

Pro Bono Awards

Presented by the Access to Justice Committee of the State Bar of Georgia and the Pro Bono Resource Center of the State Bar of Georgia
Contact: Mike Monahan, mikem@gabar.org

  • The H. Sol Clark Award

    The H. Sol Clark Award is named for former Georgia Court of Appeals Judge Clark of Savannah, who was known as the "father of legal aid in Georgia." The Clark award honors an individual lawyer who has excelled in one or more of a variety of activities which extend legal services to the poor.

  • The William B. Spann, Jr. Award

    The Spann Award is given each year either to a local bar association, law firm or a community organization in Georgia which has developed a pro bono program that has satisfied previously unmet needs or extended services to underserved segments of the population. The award is named for a former president of the American Bar Association and former executive director of the State Bar of Georgia.

  • The A Business Commitment Pro Bono Business Law Award

    Presented by the Pro Bono Resource Center of the State Bar of Georgia, the Pro Bono Business Law Award honors the business law pro bono contributions of an individual lawyer, corporate legal department or law firm to the nonprofit community development sector in Georgia.

  • The Dan Bradley Award

    Presented by the Access to Justice Committee of the State Bar of Georgia, the Dan Bradley Award honors the commitment to the delivery of quality legal services of a lawyer of Georgia Legal Services Program or the Atlanta Legal Aid Society. The award honors the memory of Georgia native and Mercer Law graduate Dan J. Bradley, who was president of the federal Legal Services Corporation.

Young Lawyers Division Awards

Presented by the YLD of the State Bar of Georgia
Contact: Mary McAfee, marym@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Annual Meeting

YLD Annual Awards

  • Distinguished Judicial Service Award

  • Ross Adams Award

    Ross Adams Award is named after the late Ross Adams and recognizes a YLD past president that demonstrates continued support of the YLD and its goals.

  • Award of Achievement for Service to the Bar

  • Award of Achievement for Service to the Public

  • Award of Achievement for Service to the Profession

  • Award of Achievement for Service to the YLD

  • Outstanding YLD Affiliate

  • YLD Ethics & Professionalism Award

  • YLD Signature Service Award

Legal Food Frenzy Awards

Presented by the Attorney General of Georgia, the Georgia Food Bank Association and the Young Lawyers Division
Contact: Mary McAfee, marym@gabar.org
Presented at the State Bar Annual Meeting

The Legal Food Frenzy is an effort of the Office of the Attorney General, the YLD and the Georgia Food Bank Association, a statewide network of eight regional food banks. The competition is designed to help the 1 in 4 children in Georgia whose families struggle to provide food for them during the summer months. Winners are awarded in the following categories:

  • Attorney General's Cup

  • Attorney General's Cup-Law School Division

  • Sole Proprietor

  • Small Firm

  • Medium Firm

  • Large Firm

  • Legal Organization

  • Corporate Legal Organization