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2024 Volunteer Recognition & Awards Event

September 12, 2024 | Washington, DC

The 2024 Volunteer Recognition & Awards Event has been scheduled for September 12, 2024, in Washington, DC. Check back soon for additional details, and access nomination information below!

2023 Volunteer Awards Program in Washington, DC

2023 Volunteer Awards Program in Washington, DC

ABA Death Penalty Representation Project

Award Nominations

Every fall, the Project celebrates volunteer lawyers at its Volunteer Recognition & Awards Event. During the event, the Project presents awards to pro bono law firms and individual attorneys that have shown exceptional commitment to excellence in capital defense. Read more about the awards below and download the nomination packet to nominate yourself or a colleague.

All nomination materials must be received by June 7, 2024!

Exceptional Service Award

Pro bono firms are nominated by their colleagues for exceptional service to death row prisoners and honored with the Exceptional Service Award. The Project recognizes the exceptional dedication and service of volunteer firms, regardless of case outcomes. Victories in the courtroom are just one of the many ways we measure success and are not a prerequisite for nomination. We welcome all nominations that highlight the tireless efforts of dedicated pro bono teams. 

John Paul Stevens Guiding Hand of Counsel Award

The Project recognizes the extraordinary efforts of individual lawyers with the John Paul Stevens Guiding Hand of Counsel Award, which was first presented to Justice Stevens in 2011. The Project recognizes pro bono attorneys and full-time capital defenders and public interest lawyers in alternating years. In 2023, the Project was pleased to present the Guiding Hand of Counsel Award to capital defender Mark E. Olive. Accordingly, in 2024 the Project will present the award to a pro bono attorney whose primary legal practice is not capital or indigent defense. Next year, in 2025 the award will again be presented to a full-time capital defender. 

Nomination Materials

For consideration by the Awards Committee, a completed nomination for either award must include the following:

  1. Nomination Application form
  2. Letter of Nomination
  3. 1-2 Letters of support
  4. Optional: Additional Materials (10 pages max)

Read about previous award winners and their extraordinary accomplishments!