Follow Us On

NAWL Awards

The following awards are presented at either NAWL's Mid-Year Meeting or the Annual Meeting.

Arabella Babb Mansfield Award

The oldest award given by the National Association of Women Lawyers in recognition of professional achievement, positive influence, and valuable contribution to women in the law and in society. The award is named after the first woman admitted to a State Bar in the United States. View past award recipients.

Challenge Award

Presented annually to an in-house legal department that has either met or adopted hiring, retention, promotion, and general employment practices and procedures designed to strive to meet NAWL's One-Third By 2020 Challenge, to increase the representation of women to one-third of leadership positions in the legal profession and to increase by one-third the diverse female attorneys (including women of color and LGBTQIA+) in every segment of the legal profession. View past award recipients.

Leadership Award

Presented to individuals in the community whose personal contributions have helped advance women lawyers and promote diversity in the legal profession. View past award recipients.

M. Ashley Dickerson Diversity Award

Named after trailblazer Mahala Ashley Dickerson, NAWL’s first African-American President (1984-85), this award is presented to a lawyer who has promoted and advanced diversity in the legal profession. View past award recipients.

NAWL Lead By Example Award

Presented to a male practicing lawyer who is a leader in his law firm, company, government unit, or public interest entity and supports the advancement of women. He works in a company, firm, or government/public interest unit that demonstrably supports such advancement. In his own department, measurable metrics support the award. That is, if he is in-house, he has a high percentage of direct female reports, with women in key positions such as head of litigation. In firms, there is a high percentage of women equity partners, women are present in significant numbers on important committees and there are significant numbers of female relationship managers. View past award recipients.

NAWL President’s Award

Presented by the current president as a special recognition of an organization that has championed policies, programs, and procedures to retain, promote and advance women attorneys. View past award recipients.

NAWL Public Service Award

Presented to a lawyer who has demonstrated throughout her career dedication and commitment to exemplary public service and social responsibility. View past award recipients.

NAWL Rising List

New in 2021, the NAWL Rising List is made up of individuals advancing in their careers, helping others advance in their careers, and/or fighting to advance women under the law. View award recipients.

Outstanding Law Student Award

Presented to the outstanding law student in the graduating class of participating ABA-approved law schools who demonstrated academic achievement, exhibited motivation, tenacity, and enthusiasm; contributed to the advancement of women in society; promoted issues and concerns of women in the legal profession; and earned the respect of the dean and law faculty. Method of nomination: varies from law school to law school; can be selected by the dean, award committees, law faculty, campus women's law caucus, or by a competitive application process. Learn more>>

Selma Moidel Smith Law Student Writing Competition

NAWL has established the annual Selma Moidel Smith Law Student Writing Competition to encourage and reward original law student writing on issues concerning women and the law. Learn more>>.

Virginia S. Mueller Outstanding Member Award

Presented to NAWL members for exemplary contributions to NAWL. View past award recipients.

NAWL Awards Timeline - September - November: Nominations open. March: NAWL Rising List celebrated at the Mid-Year Meeting. July: All other award recipients celebrated at the Annual Meeting