chevron-down Created with Sketch Beta.

2020 Annual Meeting

A Virtual Event | July 30 - August 2


We invite you to join fellow civil rights attorneys, public interest lawyers, social justice advocates, and other legal professionals across the country for the ABA's first-ever Virtual Annual Meeting.

During this year's meeting, you can expect the same exceptional CLE programming, business meetings, and networking opportunities. Registration is complimentary for ABA members and $95 for non-members.

Please visit the ABA Annual Meeting Portal for additional information on registration, the calendar of events, showcase programs, and more! 

Section Highlights

  • 2020 Thurgood Marshall Award Celebration, honoring founder and president emerita of the Children's Defense Fund (CDF) Marian Wright Edelman
  • Section-Sponsored Showcase CLE Program: The Power of Women in U.S. Elections
  • Chair's Happy Hour celebrating the Section's accomplishments amid challenges
  • Section Annual Meeting & Leadership Awards Ceremony, including annual Elections, Committee Award Presentations, and the Passing of the Gavel
  • Section Substantive Committee Meeting, providing a virtual networking event for the Section's committee leaders and members

Please note: all registration for the above events should take place through Annual Meeting Registration.

2020 Thurgood Marshall Award Celebration

Join CRSJ for the 2020 Thurgood Marshall Award Celebration, honoring legendary Award Recipient, Marian Wright Edelman, one of our nation's foremost civil rights champions and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Founder and President Emerita of the Children's Defense Fund, the country's strongest voice for children and families, Mrs. Edelman was the first African-American woman to be admitted to the Mississippi Bar while courageously directing the NAACP LDF's Jackson, Mississippi office at the height of the battle for civil rights in the deep South, and subsequently serving as Counsel to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Poor People's Campaign. The virtual celebration honoring Mrs. Edelman will take place on Friday, July 31 at 4:30 p.m. Central.

The ABA Thurgood Marshall Award Celebration recognizes long-term contributions by individuals who have significantly advanced civil rights, civil liberties, and human rights. In this moment of crescendoing national determination to address this country's shameful legacy of systemic racism, it is especially fitting that we honor and hear the inspirational words of Mrs. Edelman, and engage in a conversation with Valerie Jarrett, leading author, attorney, businesswoman and former senior advisor to U.S. President Barack Obama.


We invite your organization to become a sponsor of the 2020 Thurgood Marshall Award Celebration. Sponsorship for the 2020 Celebration is available at 5 different levels: Mission Partner ($15,000), Advocate ($10,000),  Benefactor ($5,000), Patron ($2,500), and Supporter ($1,000). When you participate through sponsorship, you help fund the innovative projects and programs implemented by the ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice to ensure that protection of civil rights remains a focus of legal and policy decisions. These programs express the profession's commitment to achieving through the legal system, the American ideals of justice, freedom, and equality for all.

The Section thanks all of the 2020 Thurgood Marshall Award Celebration sponsors for their generous support. Learn more about sponsorship  →

Individual Tickets 

Individual tickets are $100/ticket and available through Annual Meeting Registration. If you are not an ABA member, and wish to attend only the Award Celebration, please contact the Section.

The Award Celebration is an imperative funding source for CRSJ programs responding to complex legal civil rights and social justice issues. Your ticket is a charitable donation, made through the ABA Fund for Justice and Education, and is tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by law. Tickets are on sale now →

Schedule of Events

Thursday, July 30

12:00 p.m.  –  1:00 p.m. CT
Section Council Committee Meeting
 - Membership, Diversity, and Inclusion

1:00 p.m. –  2:00 p.m. CT
Section Council Committee Meeting
 - Development and Fundraising

2:00 p.m. –  4:30 p.m. CT
Executive Committee Meeting

5:30 p.m. –  6:30 p.m. CT
Chair’s Virtual Happy Hour

Friday, July 31

10:00 a.m. –  12:30 p.m. CT
Section Council Meeting

12:00 p.m. –  1:00 p.m. CT
SOC Chairs & Chairs-Elect Meeting

1:00 p.m. –  2:30 p.m. CT
Showcase CLE Program 

The Power of Women in U.S. Elections

4:30 p.m. –  5:30 p.m. CT
Thurgood Marshall Award Celebration
Honoring Marian Wright Edelman
Individual Ticket Price $100 

Saturday, August 1

9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. CT
House Rules and Calendar

12:00 p.m.  – 1:30 p.m. CT
SOC Business Meeting

12:30 p.m.  – 2:30 p.m. CT
Section Council Meeting

3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. CT
Section Annual Meeting & Leadership Awards Ceremony
̶   Section Elections
̶   Committee Award Presentations
̶   Passing of the Gavel