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Here Are the Honorees for the Georgia Legal Awards

(Photo: Oleg Krugliak/Shutterstock.com)

(Photo: Oleg Krugliak/Shutterstock.com)

The Daily Report has identified 55 honorees for the 2019 Georgia Legal Awards.

They will be recognized in special sections of the newspaper and at an evening event in June.

With a record number of nominees this year, the Daily Report had particularly difficult choices in every category. Many candidates who were not selected were excellent.

Attorney of the Year

This award recognizes a Georgia lawyer who in 2018 had the biggest impact on the law or the Georgia legal community or who did the most to advance the cause of justice.

The finalists for Attorney of the Year are:

  • Ed Buckley of Buckley Beal
  • Laurie Webb Daniel of Holland & Knight
  • Sean Young of the American Civil Liberties Union



A panel of six esteemed lawyers will choose a winner, who will be announced at the end of the Georgia Legal Awards dinner. The panel consists of: Josh Belinfante of the Robbins Firm (a 2010 On the Rise class member); Maxine Hicks of DLA Piper (a finalist for last year's Attorney of the Year); Linda Klein of Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz (last year's Attorney of the Year); Senior Judge Herbert Phipps of the state Court of Appeals (a Lifetime Achievement honoree last year); Tori Silas of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough (a 2013 On the Rise class member); and Brian Steel of The Steel Law Firm (a 2017 Attorney of the Year finalist and a 2002 On the Rise class member.)

Lifetime Achievement

The Daily Report will recognize 12 legal community members with Lifetime Achievement awards, which recognize lawyers who have left a lasting imprint on the legal community of Georgia:

  • David Aughtry of Chamberlain, Hrdlicka, White, Williams & Aughtry
  • Senior Judge Julie Carnes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • Gilbert Deitch of Deitch & Rogers
  • Senior Judge Alford Dempsey of Fulton County Superior Court
  • John Fleming of Eversheds Sutherland
  • Gordon Giffin of Dentons
  • Lash Harrison of FordHarrison
  • Richard Hines of Nelson Mullins
  • Joel Katz of Greenberg Traurig
  • Russ Richards of King & Spalding
  • Retired Chief Justice Hugh Thompson of the Supreme Court of Georgia
  • Louise Wells of Morris Manning & Martin



Distinguished Leaders

Distinguished Leader awards go to lawyers who achieved impressive results in 2018 and demonstrated clear leadership skills that helped them achieve those results. They are:

  • Sally Akins of Ellis, Painter, Ratterree & Adams
  • Rob Fortson of McGuireWoods
  • Chris Glover of Beasley Allen
  • Judge Horace Johnson of Alcovy Superior Court
  • Mike McGlamry of Pope, McGlamry
  • Azadeh Shahshahani of Project South: Institute for the Elimination of Poverty and Genocide



Litigation Departments

Three firms will pick up Litigation Department of the Year awards.

Personal Injury Defense, Midsize Firm: Swift, Currie, McGhee & Hiers

General Litigation: Taylor English Duma

Product Liability: Weinberg, Wheeler, Hudgins, Gunn & Dial

Special Litigation, Small Firm: Caplan Cobb

Small Firm, Personal Injury: Harris Lowry Manton

In-House Departments of the Year

  • The Fulton County Attorney's Office
  • Georgia-Pacific



In-House Impact awards

  • Evan Glover of NCR
  • Matthew Havice of Georgia's Own Credit Union
  • James Kerr of Southern Co.
  • Michael Wu of Carter's



Dealmakers of the Year

  • Joseph Alexander Jr. of DLA Piper
  • Douglas Selby of Hunton Andrews Kurth



Best Mentors

  • Bhavya Chaudhary of Bhavya Chaudhary & Associates
  • Lori Cohen of Greenberg Traurig
  • Joel Pugh of Joel C. Pugh & Associates
  • Shermela Williams of Thomas Kennedy Sampson & Tompkins



Best Social Mediators

  • Chief Judge Stephen Dillard of the Court of Appeals of Georgia
  • Laurie Rashidi-Yazd of the Atlanta Legal Aid Society
  • Sara Siedentopf of Siedentopf Law



On the Rise

Fourteen lawyers under the age of 40 comprise the 2019 On the Rise class. They are:

  • David Carpenter of Alston & Bird
  • Jenn Coalson of Parks, Chesin & Walbert
  • Raquel Crump of The Employment Law Solution: McFadden Davis
  • Jennifer Deal of Kilpatrick, Townsend & Stockton
  • Kacy Goebel of Home Depot
  • Corey Goerdt of Fisher & Phillips
  • Matt Joe of Holland & Knight
  • Aamir Kazi of Fish & Richardson
  • Nathan Kitchens of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Georgia
  • Lauren Linder of the Weather Channel
  • Keshia Lipcomb of Squire Patton Boggs
  • Chief Magistrate Judge Rizza O'Connor of Toombs County
  • Vincent Russo of the Robbins Firm
  • Raj Shah of MagMutual



The Georgia Legal Awards dinner will be held at Flourish Atlanta on June 20. Contact Andre Sutton at asutton@alm.com or 757-721-9020 for more information, or visit GeorgiaLegalAwards.com.