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The Kansas Bar Association Awards are annually presented at the KBA Annual Meeting. The Awards Committee, chaired by Sara Beezley, Girard, appreciates your help in bringing worthy nominees from throughout the state of Kansas to the committee's attention!
2017 KBA Awards
Instructions: Click any header to expand or collapse an award.
The KBA’s Phil Lewis Medal of Distinction is reserved for individuals or organizations in Kansas who have performed outstanding and conspicuous service at the state, national, or international level in administration of justice, science, the arts, government, philosophy, law, or any other field offering relief or enrichment to others.
Distinguished Service Award
This award recognizes an individual for continuous longstanding service on behalf of the legal profession or the public, rather than the successful accomplishment of a single task or service.
This award recognizes an individual who has practiced law for 10 or more years who, by his or her conduct, honesty, integrity, and courtesy, best exemplifies, represents, and encourages other lawyers to follow the highest standards of the legal profession as identified by the KBA Hallmarks of the Profession.
Pillars of the Community Award
This award is available to a Kansas lawyer and KBA member with a minimum of 10 years active non-specialized, general legal practice in a predominately low-density population area of Kansas. Recipients will have had substantial practice in small or solo law firms or local government service. Requirements are flexible but consideration will be given to the following factors, including how such factors apply to the lawyer’s community:
This award may be but need not be given every year. More than one recipient can receive the award in a one year.
Outstanding Service Awards
These awards are given for the purpose of recognizing lawyers and judges for service to the legal profession and/or the KBA and to recognize non-lawyers for especially meritorious deeds or service that significantly advance the administration of justice or the goals of the legal profession and/or the KBA.
Outstanding Young Lawyer
This award recognizes the efforts of a KBA Young Lawyers Section member who has rendered meritorious service to the legal profession, the community, or the KBA.
Pro Bono Award(s)
This award recognizes a lawyer or law firm for the delivery of direct legal services, free of charge, to the poor or, in appropriate instances, to charitable organizations whose primary purpose is to provide other services to the poor.
In addition to the Pro Bono Award, the KBA awards a number of Pro Bono Certificates of Appreciation to lawyers who meet the following criteria:
Distinguished Government Service Award
This award recognizes a Kansas lawyer who has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to government service. The recipient shall be a Kansas lawyer, preferably a member of the KBA, who has demonstrated accomplishments above and beyond those expected from persons engaged in similar government service. The award shall be given only in those years when it is determined that there is a recipient worthy of such award.
Courageous Attorney Award
The KBA created a new award in 2000 to recognize a lawyer who has displayed exceptional courage in the face of adversity, thus bringing credit to the legal profession. Examples of recipients of this type of award in other jurisdictions include a small-town lawyer who defended a politically unpopular defendant and lost most of his livelihood for the next 20 years, an African-American criminal defense attorney who defended two members of the white supremacist movement, and a small-town judge who lost his position because he refused the town council’s request to meet monetary quotas on traffic offenses. This award will be given only in those years when it is determined that there is a worthy recipient.
This award recognizes an individual who has shown a continued commitment to diversity; a law firm; corporation; governmental agency, department, or body; law-related organization; or other organization that has significantly advanced diversity by its conduct, as well as by the development and implementation of diversity policies and strategic plans, which include the following criteria:
The award will be given only in those years when it is determined there is a worthy recipient.
Honorary KBA Membership
This honor is bestowed upon persons who have demonstrated lifelong dedication to the state's citizens, legal and judicial system, and the bar association.