Washington, DC — The following is a statement from American Association for Justice (AAJ) Immediate Past President Navan Ward acknowledging the dedicated AAJ members who were recognized during the 2022 Annual Convention:
“Congratulations to my fellow trial lawyers on these outstanding achievements,” said Ward. “These attorneys are dedicated to seeking justice for their clients and improving their communities by demonstrating leadership, service, and integrity.”
Among the awards presented at the 2022 Annual Convention:
Trial Lawyers Care Award
• C. Benjamin Cooper of Cooper Elliott was recognized for helping to launch the first Ohio name change clinic for transgender people. The clinic trained over two dozen lawyer volunteers and began holding monthly walk-in clinics, serving as many as 33 transgender individuals per month.
Steven J. Sharp Public Service Award
• Koskoff Koskoff & Bieder, PC and the Families of Sandy Hook were recognized for securing justice for the families of five children and four adults killed in the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in a landmark victory against Remington, the company that made and marketed the AR-15 weapon used in the massacre.
Lifetime Achievement Award
• Brenda S. Fulmer of Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley, P.A. was recognized for her consequential career as a trial attorney representing thousands of people seeking justice for injury related to defective drugs, medical devices, and consumer products. An AAJ member for nearly 30 years, Brenda has served as Board member for over a decade and held many leadership positions. She is a graduate of AAJ’s Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Academy which she now supports through a generous contribution from the Fulmer Family Foundation.
Leonard M. Ring Champion of Justice Award
• Kenneth M. Suggs of Janet, Janet & Suggs, LLC was honored for his outstanding integrity and overall character and has demonstrated Leonard Ring's devotion to human and civil rights. A Past President of AAJ and member for 46 years, he is truly a champion for consumer legal rights in his skilled expertise in medical malpractice, product liability, catastrophic injuries, and wrongful death.
Harry Philo Award
• Mark Kitrick of Kitrick, Lewis & Harris, LLC was awarded the Harry Philo Award which is given to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the civil justice system and whose work has advanced the safety and protection of American consumers. A member of AAJ for 40 years, Mark has helped thousands of people through difficult times with empathy as the driving force behind his quest for justice and accountability.
Howard Twiggs Award
• Antonio M. Romanucci of Romanucci & Blandin has been an AAJ member for nearly 30 years. The Howard Twiggs Award is bestowed on an individual whose passion, civility, cordiality, and professionalism reflect the high standards set by Howard Twiggs; and whose courtroom advocacy and distinguished service to AAJ have brought honor to the trial bar and the legal profession. He and members of his firm, alongside lead counsel Ben Crump, were part of the trial team that represented the family of George Floyd in the civil lawsuit against the City of Minneapolis and four of its police officers.
David S. Shrager President’s Award
• Derrick L. Walker of Allen & Allen was recognized for demonstrating former AAJ President David Shrager's passion for the law and trial bar, and who has made an outstanding contribution to civil justice and the work of AAJ. Derrick is passionate about the law, the plaintiff bar, and AAJ’s mission, stating, “I’ve always thought about what I do as a personal injury attorney as David vs. Goliath.” A former Chair of AAJ’s Minority Caucus, Derrick has also served on the Board for over a decade and has been an AAJ member for 20 years.
The American Association for Justice works to preserve the constitutional right to trial by jury and to make sure people have a fair chance to receive justice through the legal system when they are injured by the negligence or misconduct of others—even when it means taking on the most powerful corporations. Visit http://www.justice.org.
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