Annual Events

Celebration of Leadership

Celebration of Leadership 2015

True to its name, the D.C. Bar's Celebration of Leadership is a celebratory evening that takes place every June to honor the past year's achievements and build excitement for the new goals to come. The gala dinner and annual meeting is also the official welcome of the Bar's newly elected officers, members of the Board of Governors, and American Bar Association delegates. 

With the tables set and the microphone on, the Board of Governors and past presidents of the D.C. Bar recognize leaders whose contributions have helped move the profession forward. The awards focus on some of the key values of the legal industry. Commitment to government service. Champion for civil rights and individual liberties. Dedication to public interest. Featured awards are the Beatrice Rosenberg Award for Excellence in Government Service and the Justice Thurgood Marshall or Justice William J. Brennan, Jr. Public Interest Award. In addition, outstanding D.C. Bar members, committees, sections, and projects are honored with other annual Bar awards.

At the 2015 Celebration of Leadership on June 16, D.C. Bar President Brigida Benitez gave her final speech as president as she passed the gavel on to Timothy K. Webster. Chief Judge Eric T. Washington administered the oath of office as Webster was sworn in as the 44th president of the D.C. Bar. His first action as the new leader was to offer remarks about his vision for the upcoming year.


  • Welcome newly elected officers and members of the Board of Governors.
  • Meet members of the Board of Governors, past presidents of the Bar, members of the judiciary and other leaders in the Bar community.

2015 Featured Awards:

Beatrice Rosenberg Award for Excellence in Government Service
Daniel Koffsky, deputy assistant attorney general, Office of Legal Counsel at the U.S. Department of Justice

Justice William J. Brennan , Jr. Award
James J. Sandman, president, Legal Services Corporation

View videos and read transcripts of Koffsky and Sandman accepting their awards.

Frederick B. Abramson Award
16th Annual Youth Law Fair (D.C. Bar Litigation Section and D.C. Superior Court)

Laura N. Rinaldi Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year (tie)
Dennis Lane, Stinson Leonard Street LLP
Gary Thompson, Reed Smith LLP

Section of the Year 
Administrative Law and Agency Practice Section

Pro Bono Law Firm of the Year
Covington & Burling LLP

Celebration of Leadership Host Committee

Thank you to the 2015 Celebration of Leadership Host Committee

For more information, contact Verniesa R. Allen at 202-737-4700, ext. 3239.