Each year, American Association for Justice honors trial lawyers, affiliates, and advocates who support its fight for justice.

2023 Leonard Ring Champion of Justice Award
Les Weisbrod

Recognizes an AAJ® member who is of outstanding integrity and overall character and has demonstrated devotion to human and civil rights.

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2023 Lifetime Achievement Award
Kathleen Nastri

Recognizes AAJ® members whose distinguished careers of courtroom advocacy has significantly advanced the rights of the wrongfully injured and has significantly furthered the cause for justice and the mission of the Association.

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2023 David S. Shrager President’s Award
Tom D’Amore

Recognizes an AAJ member who has demonstrated former AAJ President David Shrager's passion for the law and trial bar, and who has made an outstanding contribution to civil justice and the work of AAJ.

Learn about the award

2023 Award Winners

AAJ Partnership Award

Barbara Jorden is the Executive Director of the Idaho Trial Lawyers Association and served on AAJ’s Executive Committee as the NATLE President this past year. At last September’s Executive Committee retreat—while planning for the year ahead—Barbara was instrumental in sharing her thoughts on how AAJ and the states can best support one another during tough times. AAJ commends Barbara for her resourcefulness, commitment, and leadership.


Above and Beyond Award

Lori Andrus, John Bey, Kevin Biniazan, Yvonne Flaherty, Brian Galligan, Betsy Greene, Gary Paul, Michael Phelan, Bill Pintas, Antonio Romanucci, Christine Spagnoli, Derrick Walker, Greg Webb, and Laura Yaeger

Recognizes AAJ members who have made exceptional financial contributions to sustain and strengthen the organization. 

LGBT Caucus

LGBT Founders’ Award: Guy D’Andrea


Minority Caucus Award

Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr. Soaring Eagle Award: Gary Bledsoe

Minority Caucus Stalwart Award:  Derrick Walker



New Lawyers Division Awards

F. Scott Baldwin Award: Michael Grieco
Joe Tonahill Award: Bruce Plaxen and Sean Domnick
Elise R. Sanguinetti Award: Chris Nace




Richard D. Hailey Distinguished Service

Howard Ankin, Rick Barrera, Jr., Tom D’Amore, Brian Franciskato, Keith Hebeisen, Steve Herman, Chris Nace, Ervin Nevitt, Bryan Pope, Antonio Romanucci, Domenic Sanginiti, Jr., Elise Sanguinetti, Miranda Soucie, Derrick Walker, and Laura Yaeger.


Roxanne Barton Conlin Certificates of Recognition

Ryan Babcock, Lauren Barnes; Martin Crump, Jennifer Danish, Maria Glorioso, Elizabeth Govaerts, Deepak Gupta, Casey Johnson, Mark Lanier, Kenneth Levinson, Thomas Murphy, David Neiman, William Rossbach, Brian Sanford, Sara Schramm, David Scott, Lance Sears, Mark Silvey, Tiega Varlack, Kevin Weis, and Sara Williams


Trial Lawyers Care Award

Jon. R. Perry

Each year, AAJ recognizes a trial lawyer who has gone above and beyond to serve his or her community. Additional information about Trial Lawyers Care® and this year's award winner is available here.





Wiedemann & Wysocki Award

For 2023: Mike Arias, Michael Campbell, Casey Johnson, Kathleen Nastri, Ervin Nevitt, Emily Peacock, Leslie Pescia, Domenic Sanginiti, Jr., Chinsu Shajan, and the New Lawyers Division


Women Trial Lawyers Caucus Award

Marie Lambert Award: Krisi Kastl


Hall of Fame

2023: Michael P. Koskoff (1942-2019): Read more about this year’s inductee.

“Every day AAJ members make meaningful contributions to society by seeking justice for all. We are honored to recognize this impressive group of trial lawyers, advocating for their clients and raising the bar for all of us.”

Tad Thomas, Immediate Past President Thomas Law Offices Louisville, KY