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 ABA names 2024 finalists for Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts

The American Bar Association recently announced the 29 finalists for the 2024 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.
The winners will be announced on May 22. No more than one Silver Gavel is presented in each category. Honorable Mentions are also recognized, but awards are not presented in every category every year.

The ABA Gavel Awards Screening Committee of 50 professionals with wide ranges of legal and media expertise, including lawyer-members of the ABA, selected the 29 finalists from 176 entries received in all eligible categories, which include books, commentaries, documentaries, drama and literature, magazines, multimedia, newspapers, radio and television.

Selection criteria include how the entry addresses the Silver 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.

“We received outstanding submissions this year and are grateful to the Gavel Awards Screening Committee for their dedicated review and difficult decisions they had to make,” said Lisa Bail, chair of the ABA Standing Committee on Gavel Awards. “We are pleased to announce our finalists and extend our congratulations to the exceptional individuals and groups who produced this work.”

The ABA has presented these awards each year since 1958. The 16-member ABA Standing Committee on Gavel Awards makes the final award decisions. ABA President Mary Smith will present Silver Gavels and Honorable Mentions on August 3 at 3 p.m. at the ABA Annual Meeting at the Hyatt Regency Chicago.

To learn more about the Silver Gavel Awards, visit www.americanbar.org/groups/public_education/programs/silver_gavel.

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


• “Free to Judge: The Power of Campaign Money in Judicial Elections”
Stanford University Press
Michael S. Kang, author

• “Liar in a Crowded Theater: Freedom of Speech in a World of Misinformation”
Johns Hopkins University Press
Jeff Kosseff, author

• “Shielded: How The Police Became Untouchable”
Viking Penguin
Joanna Schwartz, author

• “State of Silence: The Espionage Act and the Rise of America’s Secrecy Regime”
Basic Books
Sam Lebovic, author

• “The Court at War: FDR, His Justices, and the World They Made”
Hachette Book Group, Public Affairs
Cliff Sloan, author

• “The Shadow Docket: How the Supreme Court Uses Stealth Rulings to Amass Power and Undermine the Republic”

Basic Books

Stephen J. Vladeck, author
• “You Might Go to Prison Even Though You’re Innocent”
University of California Press
Justin Brooks, author


• “Alabama’s Desperate Bid for a Milligan Do-over”
Kyle Whitmore, columnist


• “Bad Press”
OklaFilm LLC
Joe Peeler and Rebecca Landsberry-Baker, directors
Conrad Beilharz and Garrett F. Baker, producers
Tyler Graim, producer/cinematographer
Jean Rheem, editor

• “No Accident”
Catalyst Films, HBO Documentary Films, McGee Media
Tina Nguyen and Nancy Abraham, HBO Documentary Films, executive producers
Kristi Jacobson, Catalyst Films, director
Michelle Carney and Ali Moss, Catalyst Films, producers
Chris Herde, editor
Nausheen Dadabhoy, director of photography
Angelica Négrón, original music

• “Pardon Me”
Do Moore Films
Shuja Moore, producer/director
Sean Grasso, director of photography
Hunter Bartlett, cinematographer/editor


• “Killers of the Flower Moon”
Apple Original Films
Martin Scorsese, director
Eric Roth and Martin Scorsese, screenplay writers
Leonardo DeCaprio, Rick Yorn, Adam Somner, Marianne Bower, Lisa Frechette, John Atwood, Shea Kammer, Niels Juul, executive producers
Dan Friedkin, Bradley, Martin Scorsese, Daniel Lupi, producers
Justine Conte, co-producer
Chad Renfro, consulting producer
Rodrigo Prieto ASC, AMC, director of photography
Jack Fisk, production designer
Thelma Schoonmaker ACE, editor

• “Trial in the Delta: The Murder of Emmett Till”
Collaboraction Theatre Company
Anthony Moseley, artistic director, co-creator, co-director
G. Riley Mills and Willie Round, co-creators, co-adapters
Dana N. Anderson, co-director
Carla Stillwell, producer


• “Incident to Service”
Vanity Fair
Maximillian Potter, contributing editor
• “What Makes a Murderer?”
The New Yorker / Yale Investigative Reporting Lab
Sarah Stillman, writer


• “State Court Report”
Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law
Alicia Bannon, editor in chief, founding editor
Douglas Keith, founding editor
Kathrina Szymborski Wolfkot, managing editor
Pinky Weitzman, vice president, communications
Alden Wallace, director, creative and design
Lisa Vosper, director, multimedia
Jessica Eckert, graphic designer
Brain Palmer, director, editorial
Evan Stepper, director, digital
Nancy Watzman and Kris Fischer, consultants

• “Your Democracy”
WHYY and The Law and Policy Group, Inc.
Gloria J. Browne-Marshall, writer/host
Sarah Moses, television and video producer


• “Georgia Leading Nation in New Juvenile Lifers”
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Allie Gross, investigative reporter/writer
Brad Schrade, investigative editor
Shawn McIntosh, editor
Miguel Martinez, photographer
Pete Corson, layout design

• “In the Name of Protection: The Dark Side of Guardianship”
Bloomberg Industry Group
Ronnie Greene and Holly Barker, reporters
Gary Harki and Bernie Kohn, editors

• “Stalled Justice: Delays in the Cook County Courts”
Chicago Tribune
Joe Mahr and Megan Crepeau, reporters
Kaarin Tisue and Jeff Coen, editors
Brian Cassella, photographer

• “The Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting Trial”
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Teresa Lundeman, managing editor, news and features
Megan Guza, public safety reporter


• “Breakdown Podcast: The Trump Indictment”
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Tamar Hallerman, senior reporter
Bill Rankin, legal affairs reporter
Jay Black, executive producer
Shane Backler, senior producer
Shannon McCaffrey, senior editor
Pete Corson, audience specialist

• “The Nocturnists: Post-Roe America Podcast”
The Nocturnists
Ali Block, host/creator
Emily Silverman, MD, co-creator
Molly-Rose Williams, lead producer/editor
Sam Osborn, producer/editor/ audio engineer
Jessica Yung, producer/editor
Jon Oliver, audio engineer
Carly Besser, assistant producer
Rebecca Groves, chief operating officer
Nicole Xu, series illustrator
Anjali Walia, Dahlia Kaki, Fiona Miller, Mulki Mehari and Treya Tompkins, student producers

• “UnCommon Law’s 5-Part Podcast Series on the FTC’s Proposed Noncompete Ban”
Bloomberg Industry Group
Matthew S. Schwartz, host/producer/sound design
Josh Block, editor/executive producer

• “We Don’t Talk About Leonard”

WYNC Radio

Andrea Bernstein, Ilya Marritz and Andy Kroll, reporters/hosts
Katya Rogers, editor/executive producer
Molly Rosen, producer
Jesse Eisinger, editor
Shaan Merchant, assistant producer
Jennifer Munson, technical director
Jaren Paul, music/scoring


• “Teens’ Landmark Climate Victory”
ABC News
Devin Dwyer, correspondent
Sarah Herndon, producer
Paul Strzegowski, editor
Josh Burleson, photographer
Brad Dunn, audio technician

• “Warehoused: The Life and Death of Tristin Murphy”
CBS News Miami
Jim DeFede, writer/reporter/producer
Alexander Bombard, editor
Leon Gonzalez, Adam Spunt and Joaquin Garcia, photographers
Angela Travieso and Judy Flook, design and graphics
Monica Kirklan and Tracy Letize, marketing and programming
Kari Patey, news director
Kim Voet, president/general manager
Lily Roos, Mark Memmott, Jack Renaud and Thomas Burke, legal and standards
• “OutLaw: A Half-Century Criminalizing LGBTQ+ Texans”

Will DuPree, KXAN live anchor/ reporter
David Barer, senior investigative producer
Arezow Doost, investigative reporter
Eric Henrikson, creative producer/senior reporter
Daniel Marin, anchor/reporter
Christopher Adams, data reporter
Cora Neas, Sam Stark and Kelsey Thompson, digital reporters
Josh Hinkle, director of investigations & innovation
Eric Lefenfeld, lead editor
Todd Bynum, chief photojournalist
Chris Nelson and Richie Bowes, investigative photojournalist
Ed Zavala and Frank Martinez, photojournalist

• “Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting Trial”
Bob Mayo, Sheldon Ingram, Mike Valente, Kalea Gunderson, reporters
Paul Van Osdol, investigative reporter
Chandi Chapman and Tom Garris, anchors/reporters
Kristen Powers, anchor
Jim Parsons, news director
Mike Solakian, assistant director
Lia Launtz, Ahmanda Jackson, and Nicolas Matoney, executive producers