October 31, 2014

17th Annual Jefferson Fordham Award Winners

At its luncheon on August 8 during the ABA Annual Meeting in Boston, the Section’s Jefferson Fordham Society honored professional excellence in the practice of state and local government law by presenting its annual Jefferson Fordham Awards. Former Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino was the featured speaker at the event. The following state and local government law practitioners were recognized for their contributions to the profession.

Advocacy Award Recipient Thomas M. Menino

Elected five times as Mayor of Boston and five times as a city councilor, Thomas M. Menino has spent a lifetime building a better city for residents and businesses. Known as a mayor of the people, Mayor Menino’s people-focused approach to governing defined his tenure and produced remarkable results for New England’s largest city.

He helped transform the Boston Public Schools from a district that parents and even prospective teachers avoided to one that enjoys incredible popularity among teachers and parents alike. He made Boston’s neighborhoods and local Main Street districts stronger, with millions of dollars of investment. His focus on public health and environmental sustainability initiatives made Boston a healthier and more livable city.

Following his final term, which drew to a close in January 2014, Mayor Menino joined Boston University as co-director for the newly founded Initiative on Cities, an effort to investigate the dynamic nature of our world’s cities and bridge the gap between academic research on urban affairs and practical implementation.

Mayor Menino is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Boston with a degree in community planning.

Daniel J. Curtin Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient Larry C. Ethridge

In 1976, Larry C. Ethridge joined the staff of the ABA Model Procurement Code Project, where he served for four years as assistant project director for implementation. He served as chair of the Model Procurement Code Coordinating Committee from 1985 until he was designated as a co-chair of the Steering Committee for the MPC Revision Project, which concluded its work in 2001. Larry was as an editor for all three editions of the Model Procurement Code Annotations and has written numerous articles on state and local government procurement for various publications.

Larry practiced in the areas of public and private contracts, construction, administrative, employment, and probate law, along with related litigation in federal and state courts until his retirement from Ackerson & Yann, P.S.C. in 2014. His governmental work includes service as general counsel to the Jefferson County Deputy Sheriff Merit Board and the Louisville Firefighters Pension Fund.

He served as Chair of the ABA State and Local Government Law Section and is the Kentucky State Chair for the Public Contract Law Section’s Region Division.

Larry earned his bachelor’s degree in history from Duke University and graduated with honors from the University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of School of Law.

Daniel J. Curtin Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient Edward J. Sullivan

Ed Sullivan’s professional life is so inextricably intertwined with his personal commitment to excellence and public service that even this summary fails to capture the magical quality and love of the law he bestows on those he works with, collaborates with, and teaches.

Ed has been in private practice since 1978 and is currently the city attorney for the cities of Oregon City, Island City, and Rivergrove, and acts as special counsel for other local governments. Before going into private practice, he served as assistant county counsel and county counsel for Washington County, Oregon, and as legal counsel to the governor of Oregon.

For 25 years, Ed has taught land use planning law to planners and law students at Lewis and Clark Law School, the University of Oregon, and Portland State University. A worldwide lecturer, recent presentations include a discussion of urban growth boundaries at the PLPR conference in Israel, as well as speaking engagements in Athens and Sydney. He has published extensively, hundreds of articles and commentaries from academic journals to community newsletters, tirelessly explaining land use law and advocating for positions that promote the public welfare.

His educational accomplishments are many and worldwide, including degrees from St. John’s University, Willamette University College of Law, Portland State University, University College (London), University College (Oxford), and the University of Durham.

Up & Comer Award Recipient Jessica A. Bacher

Jessica Bacher is the executive director of the Land Use Law Center of Pace Law School. Established in 1993, the Land Use Law Center is dedicated to fostering the development of sustainable communities and regions through the promotion of innovative land use strategies and dispute resolution techniques. As the executive director, Jessica’s responsibilities include development and implementation of projects related to local land use practice, distressed property remediation, transit-oriented development, sustainable communities, land use responses to sea level rise, and code enforcement, as well as providing strategic assistance to numerous municipalities.

Most recently, she led the City of Newburgh, New York, in the development of a distressed property remediation implementation plan that focuses on the creation of a land bank.

At Pace Law School, Jessica serves as adjunct professor, teaching land use law, a sustainable development survey, and an advanced land use and sustainable development seminar. She is an appointed lecturer and project supervisor at Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, where she manages the School’s Land Use Clinic. She authors regular land use features in New York and national publications and has edited numerous books in the fields of land use and real estate law.

Jessica received her J.D. summa cum laude from Pace Law School in 2003, along with a certificate in environmental law.