The Ohio Legal Assistance Foundation Presidential Award is presented annually to individuals, law firms, or organizations that have made outstanding efforts in improving access to justice in Ohio.

Past recipients include:

  • Luann Cooperrider and Hon. Dean Wilson (2018) for establishing the Perry County Free Legal Clinic in collaboration with Southeastern Ohio Legal Services;
  • John P. Gilligan (2017) for his service on the board of the Legal Aid Society of Columbus and his effective fundraising and volunteer work for the organization;
  • Paul D. Hancock (2016) for his extraordinary individual volunteer efforts for the Legal Aid of Western Ohio; and
  • Colleen Falkowski (2015) for the creation of the first quarterly legal clinic held in Lake County Courthouse in collaboration with the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland.

The nomination period for the award is now open.  To nominate an individual, law firm, or organization for outstanding efforts in improving access to justice in Ohio, please send an email to Sophia Chang at and include the following information:

  1. Name or names of the individual(s) or organization you are nominating;
  2. Your name, phone number, and email address; and
  3. A brief statement (no more than 250 words) describing why the individual(s) or organization should be selected.

You may submit more than one nomination, but please submit each nomination separately.  You may also submit letters of recommendation but they are not required.

The Foundation Board President will review all nominations and make a final selection.

The Award will be presented on the afternoon of Friday, May 10, 2019, during the Ohio State Bar Association Council of Delegates meeting in Columbus, Ohio.

Nominations should be submitted by email to Sophia Chang at no later than Friday, March 15, 2019.