Foundation seeks Medal of Honor Award nominees

The Florida Bar Foundation will be accepting nominations for the 2018 Medal of Honor Awards until Feb. 2.

The Medal of Honor Award is given in two categories. The first category is for members of The Florida Bar, including practicing lawyers, judges or teachers in the legal field. The second category is for non-lawyers, including lawyers who are not currently practicing. All nominees must be Florida residents.

Nominees in the lawyer category must have a demonstrated dedication to the purpose of The Florida Bar, which strives to inculcate in its members the principles of duty and service to the public, to improve the administration of justice, and to advance the science of jurisprudence.

Florida Bar Executive Director John F. Harkness Jr. received the 2017 Medal of Honor Award in the lawyer category.

The 2017 Medal of Honor Award in the lawyer category was presented to Florida Bar Executive Director John F. Harkness Jr. for “his 37 years of groundbreaking leadership of one of the largest and most successful state Bar’s in the nation, his wise counsel to 37 Florida Bar presidents, and his unflagging support of The Florida Bar Foundation and the cause of access to justice.”

Recent recipients of the award also include Kathleen S. McLeroy of Tampa, attorney and former First District Court of Appeal Judge William A. VanNortwick Jr., Robert C. Josefsberg of Miami, Hank Coxe, III, of Jacksonville, and former Florida Attorney General Bob Butterworth.

Nominees in the non-lawyer category must have made outstanding contributions to the improvement of the administration of justice in Florida through research, writing, or other deeds of significant character and quality.

The 2017 Medal of Honor Award in the non-lawyer category was presented to Jane Elizabeth Curran of Orlando for “her 33 years of visionary leadership of The Florida Bar Foundation as its founding executive director, her immeasurable contributions to the national IOLTA movement, and her tireless advocacy promoting access to justice statewide and nationally.”

Other past recipients of the Medal of Honor Award for a non-lawyer include Kevin Gay of Jacksonville for his work as founder and CEO of Operation New Hope and Kathleen “Katie” Self of Sarasota for her pioneering work in the implementation of teen courts across Florida.

Nominations for The Florida Bar Foundation’s highest honor should describe the specific achievements that would qualify an individual for the Medal of Honor Award and also should include a brief biographical sketch of the nominee.

Nominations can be completed online at Nomination forms also are available from the Foundation and should be sent to: The Florida Bar Foundation, Medal of Honor Awards Program, 875 Concourse Parkway South, Suite 195, Maitland, FL 32751 or via e-mail to [email protected]

The Medal of Honor awards will be presented at the Foundation’s annual dinner during The Florida Bar Annual Convention June 14, 2018, at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek in Orlando. For more information, call The Florida Bar Foundation at (800) 541-2195, or (407) 960-7000.