Nominations for SAYLA Annual Awards are open through February 24, 2022! Please submit nominations to [email protected].  

SAYLA Annual Awards

Each year, SAYLA is proud to grant awards to individuals who have gone above and beyond in their service to the Bar, the community, and to the San Antonio Young Lawyers Association in particular.  Award winners are selected by simple vote of the Board of Directors following a nomination period each Spring, but nominations may be sent to the board president at any time.  Nominations should include a letter of recommendation and a resume or link to a firm/linked-in bio.  Local award winners are submitted for possible additional recognition on the statewide level by the Texas Young Lawyers Association (TYLA), and national recognition by the ABA Young Lawyers Division.  In 2010, for example, past SAYLA president David Evans received the Outstanding Young Lawyer Award from SAYLA, TYLA, and the ABA.  The three annual awards are as follows:

The Outstanding Young Lawyer Award is presented to a young lawyer who demonstrates professional proficiency, service to the profession, and service to the community.  OYL nominees should be members of SAYLA at the time of their nomination.

The Outstanding Mentor Award recognizes one attorney who has consistently demonstrated a commitment to mentoring young lawyers in his or her legal community.  OM nominations should include at least one letter of recommendation from a SAYLA member.

The Liberty Bell Award is presented to a non-lawyer who is significantly engaged in community service that: (1) promotes a better understanding of government, especially the Bill of Rights; (2) encourages greater respect for the law and the courts; (3) stimulates a deeper sense of individual responsibility, so that citizens recognize their duties and their rights; (4) contributes to the effective functioning of our institutions of government; and/or (5) instills better understanding and appreciation of the law

The Honorary Young Lawyer Award is given to a member of the judiciary for their service to SAYLA and young lawyers at the annual Courthouse Tour & Judicial Reception in October of each year.  The Board of Directors does not accept nominations for this award.  You can read more about the Courthouse Tour and Judicial Reception here.


Year Outstanding Young Lawyer Liberty Bell Outstanding Mentor Honorary Young Lawyer
2018 Marion Reilly Chief William McManus, City of San Antonio Tiffanie S. Clausewitz Judge Sid Harle
2017 Clayton Matheson  David R. Walding, Bernardo Kohler Center, Inc.  Hon. David Ezra Judge Fred Biery 
2016 Lindsay Riley Shokare Nakpodia, founder of DreamWeek San Antonio  Angela Moore Justice Marialyn Barnard
2015 Jessica Estorga Mohammad Abdollahi, advocacy director for the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Service Dinah Gaines Judge Cathy Stryker
2014 J. Patrick Rouse Maricruz Mosqueda, Paralegal, Equal Justice Center Lee Cusenbary Judge Sarah Garrahan
2013 James A. Rodriguez Donna Kay McKinney, Bexar County District Clerk Charles "Chip" Henry Rich, III (posthumously) Judge Polly Jackson Spencer
2012 Murray Van Eman Craig Kapitan, San Antonio Express-News Robin Teague Judge Raymond Angelini
2011 Monica Lerma Amanda Buckhert, Community Justice Program   Judge Jason Pulliam
2010 David M. Evans Maricela Lazarin, Fox Tech High School   Judge Xavier Rodriguez
2009 Laura Mason Margaret Montemayor, Bexar County District Clerk   Judge Larry Noll
2008 Emma Cano Jimmy Allison, SABA   Justice Sandee Bryan Marion
2007 Beth Watkins Squires Dr. Richard Gambitta, UTSA   Justice Rebecca Simmons
2006 Kristal M. Cordova Sister Grace Walle, Campus Ministry, St. Mary's   Judge Rene Diaz
2005 Ramon Molina Carolyn Thurmond, ED, SABF   Judge Michael Mery
2004 Dan Hargrove Jane Fritz, ED, CJP   Judge Royal Ferguson
2003 Sean McNelis Marlene Labenz-Hough, Director, BCDRC   Judge David Peeples
2002 Angela Sanchez Elsa Marie Garza, Paralegal, Fulbright & Jaworski   Justice Catherine Stone
2001 Abel Martinez Kimberly Carver, Northeast YMCA   Justice Paul Green
2000 Bobby Perez David Brem, Probate Court Admin. Assis.   Judge Andy Mireles
1999 Mary Doggett Catherine Bridge, Fox Tech    
1998 Abigail Kampmann      
1997 Wallace Jefferson      
1996 Suzanne S. Bailey Sylvia Hernandez    
1995 Martin I. Roos Ann Smith    
1994 Lowell A. Keig Mary C. Garza    
1993 Thomas R. Giltner April Schwartz    
1992 Elizabeth C. Rogers Bonnie J. Street    
1991 Mark G. Sessions Liz Davey    
1990 William T. Dooling Dela White    
1989 Peter M. Koelling Harriet C. Marmon    
1988 Frank B. Burney Raul "Jose" Jiminez    
1987 Gilbert F. Vasquez Donald L. Anderson    
1986 Cyndi Taylor Krier Lila Cockrell    
1985 Taylor Boone      
1984 Hull D. Youngblood, Jr.      
1983 Sharyll Teneyuca      
1982 Richard C. Danysh      
1981 Edward C. Prado      
1980 Fred Biery      
1979 Evelyn Biery      
1978 Jane H. Macon      
1977 Patrick J. Pape      
1976 John Compere