NCAJ Honors Champions of Justice; New Board Members Elected

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The North Carolina Advocates for Justice (NCAJ) is recognizing various legal professionals for their dedication to NCAJ’s mission of protecting and furthering people’s rights in North Carolina. Awards were presented at the association’s Annual Convention this past weekend in Wilmington, NC.

Orange/Chatham County Public Defender James E. Williams, Jr. was presented with the Thurgood Marshall Award in recognition of his extraordinary service to the people of North Carolina. Former NCAJ Executive Committee member Jim Coleman presented the award, NCAJ's second-highest recognition, to James Williams, thanking him for his leadership in the area of racial justice throughout his career.

NCAJ Legislative Vice President Valerie Johnson presented the Kellie Crabtree Award to Charlotte attorney Seth Langson and his client Robby Price. This award is given to recognize attorneys and clients in cases where the client's story and the attorney's representation have made a real difference in protecting people's rights. No North Carolina lawyer had ever sued the Roman Catholic Diocese based on the claims that sexual abuse was covered up and that the leadership of the Diocese had been complicit for years. Robby's and Seth's courage and perseverance under extreme pressure from the church were extraordinary, reflecting the sort of passion, relentlessness and success that the Kellie Crabtree award stands for.

The Honorable Linda Stephens was awarded the Outstanding Appellate Judge Award. Also, the Honorable Orlando Hudson received NCAJ's Outstanding Trial Judge Award

This past weekend NCAJ also elected new members to its Board for the 2016-17 fiscal year:

NCAJ Board - Class of 2019:

Matt Ballew, Zaytoun Law Firm (Raleigh); Elizabeth Beall, Beall Law Offices, PLLC (Morganton); Meghan Burke, Brazil & Burke, P.A. (Asheville); Chris Fialko, Fialko Law, PLLC (Charlotte); Charles Francis, Francis Law Firm, PLLC (Raleigh); Bailey Melvin, Melvin Law Firm (Greenville); Missy Owen, Tin, Fulton, Walker, & Owen (Charlotte); James Rogers, Law Office of James E. Rogers (Morrisville); Karonnie Truzy, Crumley Roberts, LLP (Greensboro) and Kim Wilson White, Wilson Law, P.A. (Raleigh). Additionally, Sarah Jessica Farber, Farber Law Firm, PLLC (Raleigh/Sanford) and Cole Williams, Law Office of N. Cole Williams (Durham) are filling unexpired terms.

NCAJ provides continuing legal education for lawyers and other legal professionals aimed at enhancing the quality of the legal profession, offers public education programs and resources aimed at enhancing access and understanding of the legal system, supports the writing of amicus briefs for the appellate courts, and advocacy work at the legislature in the areas of criminal and civil justice. The association has served its members for over 50 years.

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