Announcing the 2013 Outstanding Young Military Lawyer Award Winners!

Vol. 39 No. 2

By

Deepa Goraya is an Assistant Editor of The Affiliate, a Lobbyist and advocate for the National Disability Institute, and a visiting attorney for the Washington Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs working on their Disability Rights Project in Washington, D.C.

On August 9, 2013, the ABA Young Lawyers Division (ABA YLD) and the Judge Advocates Association (JAA) honored the winners of the 2013 Outstanding Young Military Lawyer Awards (OYMLA) at the ABA Annual Meeting in San Francisco. Coast Guard Lieutenant Michael Walker organized and conducted the presentation, which honored five OYMLA recipients, one from each military branch. This ceremony recognizes young judge advocates who excel in professional accomplishments, service to the community, leadership, and development of subordinates.

About the Award

Each year, the ABA YLD seeks nominations for the OYMLA from licensed attorneys. Nominees must be active duty officers under the age of 36 or first admitted to practice law within the last five years. The nomination packet is forwarded to a designated Judge Advocate General (JAG) point of contact (POC), who may submit up to five nominations that are then evaluated by the award panel within the JAA.

This year’s winners come from a variety of backgrounds and have served across the globe, including in combat zones. They advise commanders on a wide variety of issues, including military justice, administrative law, and military operations law, as well as on policy at the highest echelons of their respective services. Although their backgrounds are diverse, they all share the desire to serve their country and their profession. Please join us in celebrating the 2013 Outstanding Young Military Lawyers:

Army—Major Aimee M. Bateman

Major Bateman is currently an Associate Professor in the Criminal Law Department at The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School in Charlottesville, Virginia. Prior to teaching, Major Bateman was the Chief of Justice for Regional Command–South in Afghanistan. Her previous assignments include: Platoon Leader and Assistant Group Logistics Officer, 36th Engineer Group at Fort Benning, Georgia; Company Executive Officer, Battalion Adjutant, and Rear Detachment Commander, 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Benning, Georgia, Kuwait, and Iraq; and Trial Counsel and Senior Trial Counsel at Fort Drum, New York.

Major Bateman received a B.S. from the United States Military Academy in West Point, an M.S. from Troy University, a J.D. from the Texas Tech School of Law, and an LL.M. in Military Law from The Judge Advocate General’s School. She is admitted to practice law in Texas and the Northern District of New York.

Her military awards include the Bronze Star Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Iraqi Campaign Medal, and the Afghanistan Campaign Medal. She has also earned the Parachutist Badge.

Navy—Lieutenant Allison Ward

Lieutenant Ward is currently the Flag Aide to the Judge Advocate General of the Navy, Office of the Judge Advocate General, in Washington, D.C. Immediately after law school, Lieutenant Ward served as a Trial Counsel at the Region Legal Service Office Mid-Atlantic and as a legal advisor at the Joint Interrogation and Debriefing Center in Baghdad. Lieutenant Ward then transferred to the Region Legal Service Office Europe, Africa, Southwest Asia, Detachment Sigonella, where she was a Trial Counsel and Deputy Staff Judge Advocate. Following her assignment in Sicily, Lieutenant Ward transferred to the Office of the Judge Advocate General, Administrative Law Division where she was an action officer in the Personnel Law and Standards of Conduct & Government Ethics branches.

Lieutenant Ward received her undergraduate degree from Johns Hopkins University. After college, she worked for Steptoe & Johnson, LLP as a paralegal in its Washington, D.C., office. Soon after, she attended Tulane University Law School, while working for Steptoe & Johnson during the summers, and interned with JAG at its Trial Service Office in Norfolk, Virginia.

Air Force—Major Ryan N. Hoback

Major Hoback currently serves as the legal instructor and the Chief of Operations and Civil Law for the United States Air Force Expeditionary Center, located at the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey. The Expeditionary Center is the Air Force’s Center of Excellence for advanced mobility and expeditionary combat support training. He also serves as the sole legal liaison for the Air Force Chief of Staff directed EAGLE FLAG exercise which develops, tests, and rehearses expeditionary combat support capabilities, and as the primary legal advisor to the General Court-Martial Convening Authority on civil law, ethics, administrative actions, and operations law issues.

Major Hoback was recognized as a distinguished graduate at the University of Delaware and entered the Air Force as a Lieutenant during law school. In January 2004 after receiving his J.D. from the University of Baltimore School of Law, Major Hoback began his military legal career as an Assistant Staff Judge Advocate at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois. He then became an Area Defense Counsel within 18 months of being on active duty. Major Hoback next assumed the role of Appellate Government Counsel and then served as the Deputy Staff Judge Advocate at Joint Base-McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, the only tri-service Joint Base within the Department of Defense. He then served as the Staff Judge Advocate of the 380th Air Expeditionary Wing.

Marines—Captain Jason Brown

Captain Brown was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. After working for the New Orleans District Attorney’s office and as an assistant Selection Officer in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, he attended the Basic Lawyers Course at Naval Justice School in Newport, Rhode Island. In April 2008, he served as Trial Counsel and Chief Trial Counsel for the Marine Corps in South Carolina. He then served as a Series Commander and Company Executive Officer for Lima Company, Third Recruit Training Battalion, before returning to the Marine Corps in South Carolina as Senior Defense Counsel. From November 2010 to November 2011, Captain Brown served as the Headquarters and Service Company Commander and Battalion Judge Advocate for Third Battalion, Second Marine Regiment. Prior to his current assignment, he served as the Deputy Branch Head of the Judge Advocate Support Branch (JAS).

Captain Brown graduated from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, in 2003 with a B.A. in English and a minor in Business Administration. While attending Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, he attended the Platoon Leaders Class and received his commission in 2004. He then completed law school while he was in the Individual Ready Reserve and received his J.D. in Civil Law in 2006. He was admitted to the Louisiana state bar in October 2006. He is currently attending Georgetown University Law Center and is expected to graduate with a LL.M. in International Business and Economic Law in February 2014.

Captain Brown’s personal decorations include the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.

Coast Guard—Lieutenant Aaron Casavant

Lieutenant Aaron J. Casavant is an operations law attorney with the United States Coast Guard Judge Advocate General’s Office of Maritime and International Law. Following graduation from law school in 2010, Lieutenant Casavant practiced environmental law at Coast Guard Headquarters. From 2005–2007, he served as the Commanding Officer of USCGC Sturgeon in Grand Isle, Louisiana. Before assuming command, Lieutenant Casavant conducted counterdrug and migrant law enforcement operations aboard a Miami Beach-based cutter.

Lieutenant Casavant holds a J.D. from the Regent University School of Law and is admitted to practice law in the Commonwealth of Virginia. He is a 2003 graduate of the United States Coast Guard Academy, where he earned a B.S. in Marine and Environmental Sciences and his commission in the United States Coast Guard.

• • •

We owe a great deal of gratitude to the five named service members above, the nominees, and the thousands of service members across the country and abroad for their service. If you know of a military lawyer worthy of this award, please consider nominating him or her for this Outstanding Young Military Lawyer Award. The nomination process usually occurs in the spring, and this past year’s deadline to nominate an individual was March 31. Please click here for more information regarding eligibility, the nomination procedures, and other important deadlines.

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