Graduate Awards

As part of a long-standing tradition, the University of Arkansas School of Law presents 22 graduate awards and one faculty award at a ceremony held as part of May’s graduation festivities. The awards were endowed, or are funded by, benefactors with important ties to the School of Law and each was created honor members of the law school community who have excelled in a particular area of endeavor. The descriptions below indicate the past recipient(s) of that award.

American Bankruptcy Institute – Medal of Excellence

Awarded to the top student in bankruptcy studies. This award is provided through the American Bankruptcy Institute.

  • 2019 – Marshall Jones
  • 2018 – Nicholas Lovejoy
  • 2017 – JR Baxter
  • 2016 – Josh Eide
  • 2015 – Ralph Tyler Montrone
  • 2014 – Emily Goins
  • 2013 – Matthew Mitchell
  • 2012 – Erin Hawkes
  • 2011 – Brandon Tittle
  • 2010 – Drew Sadler
  • 2009 – Taylor White
  • 2008 – Blake Pennington
  • 2007 – Jesse Reyes
  • 2006 – Michael Scott Hall

American Law Institute CLE Scholarship & Leadership Award

Awarded to the student who best represents a combination of scholarship and leadership, the qualities represented by the American Law Institute. This award is provided through the American Law Institute Continuing Legal Education Group, which has been a provider of continuing legal education to lawyers across the country since 1947.

  • 2019 – Skye Austin
  • 2018 – Andrew Lawson
  • 2017 – Anna Regnier
  • 2016 – Amy Boler
  • 2014 – Katherine McDonald
  • 2014 – Bethany Whitfield
  • 2014 – Samuel Waddell
  • 2014 – Preston Tull Eldridge
  • 2014 – Lauren Clark
  • 2013 – Robin Wright
  • 2012 – Meredith Hoberock
  • 2011 – Ryan Culpepper
  • 2010 – Leah Ward
  • 2009 – Timothy Steadman
  • 2008 – Jera Rae Houghtaling
  • 2007 – Cameron McCree

Bard Rogan Natural Resources Award

Awarded for excellence in the study of oil and gas law, public lands law, water law, and other geothermal regulation.

  • 2019 – Patrick Hickey
  • 2018 – Forrest Stobaugh
  • 2017 – Jon Cigainero
  • 2016 – Maria Korzendorfer
  • 2015 – Sara Swearengin
  • 2014 – Katherine McDonald
  • 2013 – LaToya Alexander
  • 2012 – Thomas Hesselbein
  • 2011 – Justin Kavalir
  • 2010 – Clark Donat
  • 2009 – Traci Graham
  • 2008 – Timothy Evans
  • 2007 – Mark Booher
  • 2006 – Eric Pendergrass

Bassett Law Firm Trial Advocacy Prize

Awarded for exceptional achievement in trial advocacy competitions.

  • 2019 – Alyssa Watkins
  • 2018 – Leland Ferguson
  • 2018 – Bryan Foster
  • 2017 – Brett Roberts
  • 2017 – Bailey Knapp
  • 2016 – Joe Woodward
  • 2015 – Britta Stamps
  • 2015 – Brinkley Cook-Campbell
  • 2014 – Brittany Pettingill
  • 2013 – Bryant Crooks
  • 2012 – Diony Monestime
  • 2011 – Glenn Cason
  • 2011 – Lauren Baber
  • 2010 – Buckley Bridges
  • 2010 – Betsy Turner
  • 2009 – Kevin Vogeltanz
  • 2008 – Jonathan Davis
  • 2007 – Amanda Cox
  • 2007 – Britt Johnson
  • 2006 – Everett Clarke Tucker

Bogle-Sharp Award

Awarded to the student voted by their peers as most likely to succeed in the practice of law. Established in memory of Arkansas Bar Association President William Wilson Sharp and Arkansas Lieutenant Governor G. Otis Bogle, law partners in Brinkley.

    2019 – Maggie Rushing

    2018 – Pete Brunson

    2017 – Mary Elise Holman

    2016 – Jacob Lively

    2015 – Brinkley Cook-Campbell

    2014 – Donavon Sawyer

    2013 – Katherine Church

    2012 – Max Deitchler

    2011 – Jackie Cronkhite

    2010 – Clark Donat

    2009 – William Buckley III

    2008 – Asia Diggs

    2007 – Cameron McCree

    2006 – Everett Clarke Tucker

Awarded for excellence in clinical fieldwork.

  • 2019 – Skye Austin
  • 2018 – Kristen Castro
  • 2017 – Adrian Frank
  • 2016 – Josh Eide
  • 2015 – Miguel Mariscal
  • 2015 – Lilia Pacheco
  • 2014 – Bethany Whitfield
  • 2013 – Katie Eaves
  • 2012 – Nancy Hall

Craig Sterne Memorial Award – Estate Planning and Taxation

Awarded for outstanding work in the studies of estate planning and taxation.

  • 2019 – Kameron Richards
  • 2018 – Andrew Lawson
  • 2017 – Anna Regnier
  • 2017 – Kristen Webster
  • 2016 – Will Mullen
  • 2015 – Edmond McGehee
  • 2014 – Nicholas Irmen
  • 2013 – Louis Laski
  • 2012 – Isabelle Taylor
  • 2011 – Adam Bodeker
  • 2010 – Holli Heiles
  • 2009 – Emerson McNair
  • 2008 – Thomas Watson
  • 2007 – Kassandra Bentley
  • 2006 – Michael Childers

Davis, Clark, Butt, Carithers & Taylor PLC Appellate advocacy Prize

Awarded for exceptional achievement in appellate advocacy.

  • 2019 – Jessica Guarino
  • 2018 – Asia Cruz
  • 2017 – JR Baxter
  • 2017 – Kyle Kennedy
  • 2016 – Cristen Handley
  • 2016 – David James
  • 2015 – Whitney Doolittle
  • 2015 – Lauren Summerhill
  • 2014 – Mallory Langston
  • 2014 – Daniel Yim
  • 2014 – Valerie Morato
  • 2013 – Bryan Fisher
  • 2012 – Jacquelyn Harrison
  • 2011 – Holly Lar
  • 2010 – Ashley Driver
  • 2010 – Taylor Mattson
  • 2010 – Allison Waldrip
  • 2009 – Anna Betts
  • 2008 – Ryan Ray
  • 2007 – Ashley Hudson
  • 2007 – Nathan Smith
  • 2006 – Ali Brady

James H. McKenzie Award Professional Responsibility & Ethics

Awarded for outstanding performance in the area of professional responsibility and ethics.

  • 2019 – Aaron Cochran
  • 2018 – Andrew Lawson
  • 2018 – Ricky Nolen
  • 2018 – John Phillips
  • 2017 – Mary Elise Holman
  • 2016 – Dalton Person
  • 2015 – Jessica Pruitt
  • 2014 – Ariel Flood
  • 2014 – Josh Edwards
  • 2014 – Laura Pearn
  • 2013 – Jervonne Newsome
  • 2012 – J.R. Garrett
  • 2011 – Jackie Cronkhite
  • 2010 – Joshua Hite
  • 2009 – John Hall
  • 2008 – Talley Parker
  • 2007 – Justin Jones
  • 2006 – L. Keith Harvey

Joe C. Barrett Commercial Law Award

This award is provided through the Arkansas Bar Foundation and was endowed through a testamentary gift made by Joe C. Barrett (LL.B. ’53). Barrett practiced Law in Jonesboro and was senior partner in Barrett, Wheatley, Smith and Deacon.

  • 2019 – Nicholas Lovejoy
  • 2018 – Andrew Lawson
  • 2017 – Ronald Johnson
  • 2016 – Joseph Allen
  • 2015 – Graham Talley
  • 2014 – Katherine McDonald
  • 2013 – Dustin Doty
  • 2012 – Jarica Hudspeth
  • 2011 – Tyler Humphries
  • 2010 – William Clark
  • 2009 – Rebecca Worsham
  • 2008 – Richard Hebar
  • 2007 – Alberta Davis
  • 2007 – Kao Lee
  • 2006 – Michael Childers
  • 2006 – Alisha Williams

Lewis E. Epley, Jr. Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching

Awarded annually to the faculty member voted professor of the year by the graduation class. This award is endowed by Lewis Epley, Jr. (LL.B. ’61).

  • 2019 – Steve Clowney
  • 2018 – Steve Clowney
  • 2017 – Steve Clowney
  • 2016 – Will Foster
  • 2015 – Laurent Sacharoff
  • 2014 – Dustin Buehler
  • 2014 – Carlton Bailey
  • 2013 – Dustin Buehler
  • 2012 – Dustin Buehler
  • 2012 – Mary Beth Matthews
  • 2011 – Brian Gallini
  • 2011 – Ned Snow
  • 2010 – Howard Brill
  • 2009 – Ned Snow
  • 2008 – Ned Snow
  • 2006 – Richard B. Atkinson

M. Jeff Starling Award – Labor & Employment

M. Jeff Starling award is funded through the Arkansas Bar Foundation in honor of M. Jeff Starling. Starling, who died in 1990, was a prominent labor lawyer in Pine bluff, where he specialized in labor elections and negotiations. He was a member and past president of the Labor Law Section of the Arkansas Bar Association.

  • 2019 – Andrew Dixon
  • 2018 – Jennifer Hosp
  • 2017 – Kyle Kennedy
  • 2016 – Daveante Jones
  • 2016 – Jordan Cooper
  • 2015 – Laura Peterson
  • 2015 – Cory Bridges
  • 2014 – Bethany Whitfield
  • 2013 – Molly Magee
  • 2012 – Kathleen Bly
  • 2011 – Margaret Katherine Carver
  • 2010 – Kristi Hunter
  • 2009 – Grace Keegan Johnson
  • 2008 – Hope Lauresha Jackson
  • 2007 – Elizabeth Rowe
  • 2006 – Anthony Lewis

Awarded for outstanding work in medical legal studies.

  • 2019 – Ashleigh Giovannini
  • 2018 – Kristen Castro
  • 2017 – Rollin Ty Barnes
  • 2016 – Dorothy Goodwin
  • 2015 – Jordan Broyles
  • 2014 – Charsie Gordon
  • 2014 – Kylie Wiley
  • 2013 – Evan Stallings
  • 2012 – Robert Patton
  • 2011 – Ryan Culpepper
  • 2010 – Eric Bell
  • 2009 – Adam Mansfield Lentz
  • 2008 – Leann Box
  • 2007 – Robyn Ryan
  • 2006 – Lindsay Edwards

Outstanding Contribution to the Law School Community Award

Awarded for outstanding positive contributions and service to the School of Law community.

  • 2019 – Christina Lusk
  • 2018 – Brittany Ford
  • 2017 – Emily O’Neal
  • 2016 – Miriam Elizabeth Ramirez
  • 2015 – Mary Buckley
  • 2014 – Bethany Whitfield
  • 2013 – Katie Bushkuhl
  • 2012 – Jennifer Corbin
  • 2011 – Haley Heath
  • 2010 – Jack Buckley
  • 2010 – Joe Bussell
  • 2009 – Phillip Brick, Jr.
  • 2008 – Ryan Ray
  • 2007 – K.C. Tucker
  • 2006 – Calysta Johnson

Outstanding Contribution to the Law School Publications Award

Awarded for outstanding contributions to law school publications.

  • 2019 – McKenzie Raub
  • 2018 – Clay Sapp
  • 2017 – Anna Regnier
  • 2016 – Cristen Handley
  • 2015 – Graham Talley
  • 2014 – Samuel Waddell
  • 2013 – Katherine Church
  • 2012 – Kathryn Smith
  • 2011 – Haley Heath
  • 2010 – Samantha Leflar
  • 2009 – Catherine Odom
  • 2008 – Suzanne Clark
  • 2007 – Jamie Goss Dempsey
  • 2006 – Everett Clarke Tucker

Pro Bono Awards

Awarded to students beginning in 2019 for excellence in pro bono service.

Pro Bono Silver Award

Awarded to students who have completed 50 hours or more of pro bono service.

  • 2019 – Raelynn Hillhouse
  • 2019 – Ashleigh Giovannini
  • 2019 – Christina Lusk
  • 2019 – Kameron Richards

Pro Bono Gold Award

Awarded to students who have completed 100 hours or more of pro bono service.

  • 2019 – Katie Rose Martin
  • 2019 – Kelley Boyd

Community Engagement Award

  • 2019 – Katie Rose Martin

Recipient selected by the Legal Aid of Arkansas.

  • 2019 – Kelley Boyd

Robert F. Fussell Pro Bono Award

Awarded to the student who gives the most hours to pro bono service, exemplifying Judge Fussell’s distinguished career in public service and his dedication to pro bono work.

  • 2019 – Kelley Boyd
  • 2018 – Celina Walker
  • 2017 – Celina Walker
  • 2016 – Marco Lavalle
  • 2015 – Alice Havner
  • 2014 – Chad Kelly
  • 2013 – Michael Truong
  • 2012 – Laura Johnson
  • 2011 – Kambira Jones
  • 2010 – Sarah Hudson
  • 2009 – Tiffany Brown
  • 2008 – Susan Scott
  • 2007 – Derick Allison

T.C. and Rosemary Carlson Memorial Award – Constitutional Law

Awarded to the graduate who demonstrates excellence in study of constitutional law. This award is provided through the friends and family of T.C. Carlson. Carlson was a University of Arkansas administrator from 1915-58, serving as registrar, vice president of finance and treasurer. After retiring from the university, he went back to school and received a law degree at age 70 (1963). Friends and family contributed the funds to endow the award.

  • 2019 – Raelynn Hillhouse
  • 2018 – Ricky Nolen
  • 2017 – Alex Nguyen
  • 2016 – Dorothy Goodwin
  • 2015 – Jessica Pruitt
  • 2014 – Preston Tull Eldridge
  • 2013 – Jervonne Newsome
  • 2012 – Joshua Mostyn
  • 2012 – Joshua Mostyn
  • 2011 – Jackie Cronkhite
  • 2010 – Michael Thompson
  • 2009 – Timothy Steadman
  • 2008 – Robert Younger
  • 2007 – Caleb Patterson
  • 2006 – William Bassett Harris, Jr.

W.J. Arnold Memorial Award for Most Promising Trial Lawyer

Awarded to graduates who demonstrate the most potential for becoming trial lawyers with emphasis on performance in moot court competitions. This award is funded by the Independence County Bar Association of Batesville as a memorial to W.J. “Bill” Arnold.

  • 2019 – Erin Keil
  • 2018 – Jessica Boykin
  • 2018 – Brittany Ford
  • 2017 – Corey Anderson
  • 2016 – Spencer Sims Bowling
  • 2015 – Blake Montgomery
  • 2015 – Tyler Squires
  • 2014 – Jonathan Brown
  • 2013 – Christopher Bryant
  • 2012 – Adam Montessi
  • 2011 – Haley Heath
  • 2010 – Leah Ward
  • 2008 – Matthew Panach
  • 2007 – David McDaniel
  • 2006 – Stephanie DeClerk

W.B. Putman American Inn of Court Pupil Award

Awarded to graduates who demonstrate professional excellence in the American Inn of Court Program. The number of awardees changes from year to year depending on participation and distinction. The W.B. Putman Inn of Court is the local chapter of the American Inns of Court, an organization founded to promote civility in the profession. Every year the local Inn sponsors a group of 3L students as “pupils” in the Inn. The students attend the monthly meetings (during the academic Year) and assist with pupilage groups who organize and present a Continuing Legal Education program at each meeting. At the end of the year, the Inn designates students for Pupil Awards.

  • 2019 – Ethan Ellis
  • 2019 – Patrick Hickey
  • 2019 – McKenzie Raub
  • 2018 – Jessica Boykin
  • 2018 – Luke Brasuell
  • 2018 – Rachel Carney
  • 2018 – Haley Ethridge
  • 2018 – Brittany Ford
  • 2018 – Jennifer Hosp
  • 2018 – Beth Kanopsic
  • 2018 – Zach Musgraves
  • 2018 – Drew Myers
  • 2018 – Jack Phillips
  • 2017 – Corey Anderson
  • 2017 – Taylor Bish
  • 2017 – Misty Grady
  • 2017 – Caroline Kennedy
  • 2016 – Erin Callan
  • 2016 – Abbey Clark
  • 2016 – David James
  • 2016 – Caleb Lang
  • 2016 – Nick Mote
  • 2015 – Courtney Cassidy
  • 2015 – Jadyn Cleveland
  • 2015 – Sarah Jewell
  • 2015 – Christian Lehmberg
  • 2015 – Edmond McGehee
  • 2015 – Jordan Phillips
  • 2014 – Nicholas Irmen
  • 2014 – Whitney Matney
  • 2014 – Daniel Sbanotto
  • 2014 – Katie Lee Skains
  • 2014 – Chancey Combs
  • 2013 – Scot Allison
  • 2013 – Robyn Brown
  • 2013 – Katie Bushkuhl
  • 2013 – Elizabeth Cook
  • 2013 – Katie Eaves
  • 2013 – Kelsey Fohner
  • 2013 – Tiffany Hord-Morris
  • 2013 – Cortney Price
  • 2013 – Suzanne Solomon
  • 2013 – Brooke South
  • 2013 – Anna Williams
  • 2012 – Jennifer Corbin
  • 2012 – Jenae Tyler
  • 2012 – Joshua Mostyn
  • 2012 – Fred Davis
  • 2011 – Jennifer Carleton
  • 2011 – Jennifer Cole
  • 2011 – Amanda Jarvis
  • 2011 – R. Scott Johnson
  • 2011 – Martin Nieto
  • 2010 – Kimberly Mueller
  • 2010 – Ezinne Arisukwu
  • 2009 – Emerson McNair
  • 2009 – Lensa Odima
  • 2008 – M. Christina Northern
  • 2008 – Justin Rains
  • 2007 – Tina Adcock
  • 2006 – Ross Noland
  • 2006 – David Reading