ABA announces 2015 Silver Gavel Award finalists

The American Bar Association has announced the 14 finalists for the 2015 Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts, which recognize outstanding work that fosters the American public's understanding of law and the legal system. This is the ABA's highest honor in recognition of this purpose.

"Every year, the ABA's Gavel Awards Screening Committee is impressed by the submitted works," said Cory M. Amron, chair of the Gavel Awards committee. "We applaud our finalists and look forward to choosing the winners for this prestigious award."

The winners - no more than one Silver Gavel is presented in each category - will be announced on May 13.

The ABA Gavel Awards Screening Committee, composed of 45 lawyer-members of the ABA, selected the 14 finalists from 168 entries received in all eligible categories, which include: books, magazines, newspapers, commentary, drama and literature, documentaries, television, radio and other media.

Selection criteria include: how the entry addresses the Gavel Awards' purpose and objectives; educational value of legal information; impact on, or outreach to, the public; thoroughness and accuracy in presentation of issues; creativity and originality in approach to subject matter and effectiveness of presentation; and demonstrated technical skill in the entry's production.

The Association has presented these awards annually since 1958. The 18-member ABA Standing Committee on Gavel Awards makes the final award decisions. ABA President William Hubbard will present the awards on July 21 in Washington, D.C.

To learn more about the Silver Gavel Awards, go to www.ambar.org/gavelawards.

The following is a complete list of finalists with a link to their work:


"Burning Down the House: The End of Juvenile Prison"

Nell Bernstein, Author

The New Press


"The Case Against the Supreme Court"

Erwin Chemerinsky, Author

Viking/Penguin Books


"Uncertain Justice: The Roberts Court and the Constitution"

Laurence Tribe and Joshua Matz, Authors

Henry Holt and Company



"The Murders at the Lake"

Michael Hall, Executive Editor

Texas Monthly



"No Relief"

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Cary Spivak, Reporter


"Till Death Do Us Part"

The Post and Courier

Glenn Smith, Projects Editor

Doug Pardue, Projects Reporter

Jennifer Berry Hawes, Faith and Values Reporter

Natalie Caula Hauff, Reporter




Stop Productions

Spencer Wolff, Director/Producer


"The Case Against 8"

Tripod Media

Ben Cotner and Ryan White, Directors/Producers

Jessica Lawson, Co-Producer



"15 to Life: Kenneth's Story"

American Documentary/POV

Nadine Pequeneza, Director/Producer

Chris White, Vice President, Programming and Production

Simon Kilmurry, Executive Producer

Cynthia Lopez, Co-Executive Producer


"The New Black"

Promised Land Film

Yoruba Richen, Producer/Director

Yvonne Welbon, Producer

Angela Tucker, Co-Producer



"Serial: Season One"


Julie Snyder, Executive Producer

Sarah Koenig, Host and Executive Producer

Dana Chivvis, Producer


"60 Words"

Radiolab WNYC

Jad Adumrad, Host/Editor

Robert Krulwich, Host

Kelsey Padgett, Producer



"Segregation Now: Investigating America's Racial Divide"


Nikole Hannah-Jones, Investigative Reporter

Minhee Cho, Communications Manager

Maisie Crow, Independent Documentary Filmmaker


"Profiting from Prisoners: Time is Money"

The Center for Public Integrity

Eleanor Bell, Multimedia Editor

Daniel Wagner, Reporter


Published: Tue, Mar 17, 2015