Fortney honored with ABA Michael Franck Award

Susan Fortney, a law professor and recognized national expert on ethics, is the 2024 recipient of the Michael Franck Professional Responsibility Award, one of the American Bar Association’s top ethics honors. The award, named in honor of Michael Franck, the late director of the State Bar of Michigan and long-time champion of improvements in lawyer regulation in the public interest, recognizes an individual whose contributions reflect the highest level of dedication to legal professionalism. The award will be presented May 30 during the 2024 ABA National Conference on Professional Responsibility in Denver.

Fortney is the Stephen R. Alton University Professor and director of the Program for the Advancement of Legal Ethics at Texas A&M University School of Law in Fort Worth. She is internationally renowned for her research, scholarship and teaching on legal ethics and the regulation of lawyers. She has also earned the reputation as an outstanding, dedicated and creative public servant, whose work with scholars, lawyers, regulators, courts and bar organizations demonstrates a commitment to improving lawyer ethics, conduct and regulation.

Fortney has taught legal ethics at Texas Tech, Boston, St. Johns, Hofstra and Texas A&M universities and abroad in Slovenia, Poland and Australia. She is credited by many as being one of the first to introduce the Proactive, Management-Based Regulation (PMBR) concept to lawyer regulation entities and has been an integral resource to multiple U.S jurisdictions in development of their individual PMBR programs.

She is the author of more than 50 articles and other materials. She has also championed various access- to-justice initiatives.