CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - November 28, 2016) - The Board of Directors of the Legal Writing Institute (LWI) is delighted to announce that Dahlia Lithwick is the recipient of the 2017 Golden Pen Award. Lithwick is an author, journalist, former attorney, and senior editor at Slate. Since 2014, she has also served as the founder and host of the podcast Amicus: Law and the Supreme Court Justices Who Interpret it. The award will be presented during the 2017 Association of American Law Schools annual meeting in San Francisco, California, on January 4, 2017.
The Golden Pen Award honors those who make significant contributions to advance the cause of better legal writing. These contributions may take any form, such as promoting the use of clear language in public documents, improving the quality of legal writing instruction, advocating for better writing within the legal community, outstanding scholarship or journalism about legal writing or legal topics, or exceptional writing in law practice. The award is normally given to someone who is not an active member of LWI, but active members are considered in exceptional circumstances.
The LWI Awards Committee recommended Lithwick for the 2017 Golden Pen to recognize her incisive writing about legal issues, and the varied ways in which she shares information about the courts with the public. Her writing has been published in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The New Yorker, The Washington Post, Elle, New Republic, and Harper's. She has appeared on major news networks, The Colbert Report, and is a regular guest on MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. Lithwick is also co-author of two books, Me v. Everybody: Absurd Contracts for an Absurd World and I Will Sing Life: Voices from the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp.
Lithwick's nominators noted that she is "extremely gifted and highly regarded." Her peers admire her for her brilliance and candor. In a 2014 interview, Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg praised Lithwick's writing about the courts, calling her "very good" and "kind of-spicy." The LWI Board unanimously approved this recommendation.
Previous recipients of the Golden Pen award are Arthur Levitt, Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission; Don LeDuc, Dean of the Thomas Cooley Law School; Linda Greenhouse, Supreme Court correspondent for the New York Times; the late Honorable Robert E. Keeton of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts; Richard Wydick, Professor at the University of California at Davis School of Law; the Honorable Ronald M. George, the Honorable Carol A. Corrigan, and the Honorable James D. Ward, Justices of the Supreme Court of California and the California Court of Appeal; the Honorable Ruggero J. Aldisert of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit; the National Association of Attorneys General; William C. Burton, Esq.; George Gopen, Professor of the Practice of Rhetoric in the English Department at Duke University; Jeffrey Rosen, Professor of Law at The George Washington University and President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Constitution Center; Ken Adams, author; the Honorable Michael A. Ponsor of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts; and Ross Guberman, author.
The LWI Board is grateful for the work of the LWI Awards Committee in identifying nominees and making recommendations to the Board. The Committee includes Co-chairs Myra Orlen and Kirsten Dauphinais, and members Brenda Gibson, Margaret Hannon, Greg Johnson, Mary Nagel, and Suzanne Rowe.