Annual Events

Celebration of Leadership

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.

Save the Date!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015
Mayflower Renaissance Hotel, The Grand Ballroom
1127 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20036

7:00 p.m. Membership Reception
7:30 p.m. Annual Meeting, Awards Program, and Dinner

At the 2015 Celebration of Leadership, D.C. Bar President Brigida Benitez will give her final speech as president as she passes the gavel on to Timothy Webster. Chief Judge Eric T. Washington will administer the oath of office as Webster is sworn in as the 44th president of the D.C. Bar. His first action as the new leader will be 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.

2014 Featured Awards:

Beatrice Rosenberg Award for Excellence in Government Service
Colonel Tonya Hagmaier, director of Civil Law and Litigation for the United States Air Force

Justice Thurgood Marshall Award
Brooksley Born, retired partner of Arnold & Porter LLP

Section of the Year
Antitrust and Consumer Law Section

Laura N. Rinaldi Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year (tie)
Allen Snyder, Children's Law Center
Kurt Jacobs, Sidley Austin LLP

Pro Bono Law Firm of the Year
Arnold & Porter LLP

Bar Project of the Year (tie)
D.C. Bar Legal Ethics Committee
Family-Based Immigration Law Book Project

Award for Exceptional Service
Phil Mendelson, D.C. Council
V. David Zvenyach, D.C. Council

Frederick B. Abramson Award
Limited Scope Working Group

Celebration of Leadership Host Committee

The D.C. Bar would like to thank the firms, organizations, schools, and groups that supported the 2014 Celebration of Leadership award recipients with their purchase of a table or half table to the dinner.

View the 2014 Celebration of Leadership Host Committee.

For more information about the Celebration of Leadership, contact Verniesa Allen at 202-737-4700, ext. 3239.