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May 24, 2023

ABA announces nine winners of the 2023 Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts

WASHINGTON, May 24, 2023 — CBS’ Norah O'Donnell and a Snoop Dogg-produced documentary are among the winners of the ABA’s 2023 Silver Gavel Awards. The American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts, recognize outstanding work that fosters the American public’s understanding of law and the legal system. This is the ABA’s highest honor in recognition of this purpose. 

Topics focusing on inequality, injustice, forgiveness, redemption, abortion rights, eavesdropping, affirmative action and modern-day slavery took the top prizes.

This year the ABA is presenting nine Silver Gavels and five Honorable Mentions among 30 finalists identified from 165 entries received in all eligible categories, which include books, commentary, documentaries, drama and literature, magazines, multimedia, newspapers, radio and television.

“The American Bar Association has completed its deliberative and careful review of each of the outstanding finalists,” said Lisa Bail, chair of the ABA Standing Committee on Gavel Awards. “The selected winners of the Silver Gavel Awards have produced exceptional work that advances public understanding of the law and the justice system.  We congratulate each of the awardees on this well-deserved recognition.”

ABA President Deborah Enix-Ross will present the awards at the 65th Anniversary Silver Gavel Awards Presentation on July 25 at 5:30 p.m. at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The event is free and open to the public and will also be livestreamed.

The following is a complete list of the 2023 Silver Gavel award winners with links to their work:


Silver Gavel – “The Other Side of Prospect
W.W. Norton & Company
Nicholas Dawidoff, author


Silver Gavel – The Maddening Irrelevance of Charlie Vaughn’s Innocence
The Watch
Radley Balko, independent journalist


Silver Gavel – When Claude Got Shot
371 Productions
Brad Lichtenstein, director
Steven Cantor, Brad Lichtenstein and Jamie Schutz, producers
Snoop Dogg, Sally Jo Fifer, Lois Vossen, Leslie Fields Cruz, Geralyn Dreyfous and Ted Chung, executive producers
Patty Quillin, co-executive producer
Santana Coleman, co-producer
Michelle Chang, editor
Colin Sytsma, director of photography
Vernon Reid, original music
Noland Walker, consulting producer
Shana Swanson, supervising producer

Honorable Mention – American Justice on Trial: People v. Newton
Open Eye Pictures
Lise Pearlman, producer
Abby Ginzberg and Robert Richter, co-producers
Andrew Abrahams, co-director, producer, principal DP, editor
Herb Ferrette, co-director

Honorable Mention – The Lost Story of Emmett Till”
NBC 5 Chicago (WMAQ-TV)
Marion Brooks, anchor and investigative reporter
DS Shin, photographer/editor
Tom Jones, investigative producer
Lauren Stauffer, managing editor
Lisa Balde, vice president of digital media
Akemi Harrison, assistant news director
Frank Whittaker, vice president of news
Kevin Cross, general manager


Silver Gavel – “Take My Hand”
Penguin Random House
Dolen Perkins-Valdez, author

Honorable Mention – Trial in the Delta: The Murder of Emmett Till”
Collaboraction Theatre
Anthony Moseley and Dana N. Anderson, producers/directors
G. Riley Mills and Willie Round, writers/producers
Carla Stillwell, Saudia Davis and Pricilla Torres, producers
Marquis Simmons, assistant director/producer


Silver Gavel – The Rogue Court that Paved the Way for Roe’s Demise”
Texas Monthly
Michael Hall, writer/executive editor


Silver Gavel – Eavesdropping in Maine Jails
The Maine Monitor
Samantha Hogan, reporter
Eric Conrad and David Dahl, editors
George Harvey, multimedia editor
Hal Madsen, copyeditor
Rose Ciotta, Investigative Editing Corps., editor


Silver Gavel – Captive No More: One SC Man’s Journey to Freedom After Years in Modern-day Slavery
The Post and Courier
Jennifer Berry Hawes, watchdog and public service reporter
Autumn Phillips, executive editor
Glenn Smith, watchdog and public service editor
Andrew Whitaker, photojournalist
Brandon Lockett, digital graphics producer


Silver Gavel – Affirmative Action Faces Toughest Test in a Generation
Bloomberg Industry Group
Matthew S. Schwartz, host/producer
Josh Block, editor/executive producer

Honorable Mention – Breakdown: Season 9, The Trump Grand Jury
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Bill Rankin, creator/host/writer/senior reporter legal affairs
Tamar Hallerman, host/writer/senior reporter enterprise
Shane Backler, sound engineer/producer/senior producer, podcasts & audio content
Jay Black, audio & podcast program manager
Pete Corson, digital presentation specialist


Silver Gavel – The CBS Evening News with Norah O'Donnell: Roe v Wade
CBS News
Norah O’Donnell, anchor and managing editor
Adam Verdugo, executive producer
Alturo Rhymes, executive story editor
Elizabeth Turner, senior broadcast producer
Jan Crawford, Omar Villafranca, Jamie Yuccas, Elaine Quijano, Lana Zak and Nancy Cordes, correspondents
Julie Morse, Brian Gottlieb, Paul Facey, Sherri Sylvester, and Patrick Becker, senior producers
Robert Kozberg, Caroline Bol, Anam Siddiq, Chris Liable, Kate Rydell, Corey Rangel, Rebecca Kaplan, Rebecca Reingold, Durrell Dawson, Angela Moore, Maggie Dore and Olivia Rinaldi, producers
Brian McEneny, Stephen Boyd, Chris Hassan, Larry Goldfine, George Whipple, Gustavo Sampaio and Heather Spinelli, editors

Honorable Mention – Spotlight: Supreme Court
ABC News
Devin Dwyer, correspondent
Sarah Herndon, Robert Gehlen and Isabella Meneses, producers Paul Strzegowski, editor
Paul Dougherty, director of photography
Joey Ybarra, Lincoln Wiese and Sal Malguarnera, photographers
John Fonseca, Jeff Edrich and Larry Kaltenbach, audio technicians

The ABA has presented these awards each year since 1958. The 16-member ABA Standing Committee on Gavel Awards makes the final award decisions. No more than one Silver Gavel is presented in each category. Honorable Mentions are also recognized, but awards are not presented in every category every year.

Selection criteria include how the entry addresses the Silver Gavel Awards’ purpose and objectives; educational value of legal information; impact on, or outreach to, the public; thoroughness and accuracy in presentation of issues; creativity and originality in approach to subject matter and effectiveness of presentation; and demonstrated technical skill in the entry’s production.

To learn more about the Silver Gavel Awards, go to Silver Gavel (

To register for the in-person or streamed event click here.

The ABA is the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.