The 2018 APEX Awards

Nominations Now OpenAPEX logo
Deadline: March 15, 2018

The Washington State Bar Association is seeking nominations for the 2018 WSBA Annual APEX Awards. The APEX – Acknowledging Professional Excellence — Awards honor exemplary members of the legal community, including legal professionals, judges, and members of the public. The awards will be presented at the Annual APEX Awards Dinner in Seattle on Sept. 27, 2018, to those who have made noteworthy contributions and achievements in public service, government service, professionalism, pro bono work, diversity and other areas.

Nominations are welcome from the legal community and the public. To nominate a person or group, please complete a nomination form and email it, along with supporting materials, to barleaders@wsba.org by March 15, 2018.


APEX Award Categories

Angelo Petruss Award for Lawyers in Government Service
Named in honor of Angelo R. Petruss, a senior assistant attorney general who passed away during his term of service on the WSBA Board of Governors, this award is given to a lawyer in government service who has made a significant contribution to the legal profession, the justice system, and the public.

Award of Merit
This award is the WSBA's highest honor and is given to an individual for a recent, singular achievement. The singular achievement may involve an individual who has displayed exceptional courage in the face of adversity, thus bringing credit to the legal profession. It is awarded to individuals only – both legal professionals and members of the public.

Excellence in Diversity Award
This award is made to a lawyer, law firm, or law-related group that has made a significant contribution to diversity in the legal profession.

Legal Innovation Award
This award recognizes legal professionals, law firms, courts, law schools, individuals, or organizations who demonstrate leadership in promoting innovation in the practice of law. Innovation may be defined as programs, processes, or technology that advance or streamline the future of the profession and accessibility/delivery of legal services.

Lifetime Service Award
This award is a special award given for a lifetime of service to the legal community and the public.

Norm Maleng Leadership Award 
This award is given jointly by the WSBA and the Access to Justice Board, in honor of the late King County Prosecutor Norm Maleng's legacy as a leader. He was an innovative and optimistic leader committed to justice and access to justice in both civil and criminal settings. Within the profession, his leadership was characterized by his love of the law and commitment to diversity and mentorship. This award recognizes those who embody these qualities.

Outstanding Judge Award
This award is presented for outstanding service to the bench and for special contribution to the legal profession at any level of the court.

Outstanding Young Lawyer Award
This award recognizes one attorney who has made significant contributions to the professional community, especially the community of young lawyers, within their initial years of practice. Recipients must be active WSBA members within five years of admission to any bar association or less than 36 years of age.

Pro Bono and Public Service Awards
These awards are presented to an individual, a lawyer, other legal professional, law firm, or other legal entity for outstanding cumulative efforts in providing pro bono services or who gives back in meaningful ways to the public, the community, or to the legal profession. Nominations will be considered in two categories: 1) for an individual, or solo or small firm practitioner; 2) for a multi-person law firm or organization.

Professionalism Award
This honor is awarded to a WSBA member who exemplifies the spirit of professionalism in the practice of law, as defined in the WSBA's Creed of Professionalism.

Sally P. Savage Leadership in Philanthropy Award
The Washington State Bar Foundation is accepting nominations for the Sally P. Savage Leadership in Philanthropy Award, to be awarded at the WSBA Annual Award dinner in September 2018. Sally Savage led the Bar Foundation’s renaissance and was a catalyst for its refocused mission to sustain the WSBA’s effort to advance justice and diversity. Her clarity, expertise and vision helped establish a path for enduring support of a strong bar association that provides statewide leadership on matters of profound importance to the profession and the citizenry. Sally’s spirit of generosity and leadership continue to inspire all who recognize the transformative potential of philanthropy. Philanthropy means “love of humanity” and focuses on private initiatives for the public good, focusing on quality of life. Sally Savage emulated this spirit of philanthropy in her life, and it is in her memory that we continue to honor donors, volunteers and friends of the Washington State Bar Foundation who embody Sally’s spirit.


Email questions to barleaders@wsba.org or call Sanjay Walvekar at 206-733-5903

Past WSBA Award Recipients

Access to Justice Board Awards

Nominate people and organizations who make access to the justice system a reality for people in need.