Press Release
Jim Greif
(202) 296-1593


AALS Announces Inaugural Section of the Year Honorees

Washington, D.C. (November 16, 2017) – The Association of American Law Schools (AALS) is pleased to announce that the winners of the inaugural AALS Section of the Year Award are the Section on Clinical Legal Education and the Section on Women in Legal Education.
The annual award recognizes excellence in member support and other activities that promote AALS core values, which may include annual meeting programming, facilitating outstanding scholarship, providing teaching support and course materials, community/pro bono service, engagement with the bar and bench, mentoring programs, expanding membership and member engagement, creative use of technology, and more.
“For both sections, the committee was impressed by the wide range of programs and projects they sponsored, as well as their year-round support of work within their fields and an emphasis on broad outreach and mentorship,” said Anita K. Krug, Interim Toni Rembe Dean and Professor at the University of Washington School of Law and Chair of the AALS Committee on Sections, which oversaw the award selection process.
The AALS Section on Clinical Legal Education was honored for its engagement through webinars and other activities, strong leadership structure, encouraging the use of technology in teaching, robust mentoring program, and promotion of excellence in scholarship. The section also presents two annual awards: the William Pincus Award, recognizing scholarship, program design, and other activities advancing clinical legal education and justice, and the Shanara Gilbert Award, honoring outstanding teaching and service to the community and clinical legal education.
“The Section on Clinical Legal Education is delighted to receive this recognition. This award reflects the extraordinary level of clinical faculty engagement in AALS activities that benefit our community,” said Lisa R. Bliss, Clinical Professor and Associate Dean of Experiential Education, Georgia State University College of Law and Chair of the AALS Section on Clinical Legal Education. “Our section has 18 energetic committees doing the hard work that has resulted in our receipt of this award. Their efforts support the professional development of clinicians by facilitating scholarship, teaching, and the creation of other important resources.”
The AALS Section on Women in Legal Education was recognized for a variety of programs including a “speed mentoring” session each year at the Annual Meeting; the oral history project to record and preserve interviews with accomplished senior female faculty; and a lifetime achievement award (named after inaugural winner and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg) at the section’s Annual Meeting luncheon. The section also hosts a hospitality suite for candidates at the AALS Faculty Recruitment Conference, and a welcome breakfast at the AALS Workshop for New Law Teachers.
“The AALS Section on Women in Legal Education is thrilled to receive this award,” said Kerri L. Stone, Professor, Florida International University College of Law and Chair of the AALS Section on Women in Legal Education. “We are one of the largest sections of AALS, but we have a long and rich history of programming and endeavors that make the section feel intimate. This group has enjoyed decades of strong, dedicated leadership. This year, I am exceptionally lucky to be working with an Officer Board and an Executive Committee that are extraordinarily involved, smart, and committed to creating opportunities for our membership to meet, learn from, and celebrate one another.”
The sections will be honored at the Section Officers Breakfast during the Annual Meeting in January. AALS will be seeking nominations for the next Section of the Year award in Spring 2018.
About AALS
The Association of American Law Schools (AALS), founded in 1900, is a nonprofit association of 179 law schools. Its members enroll most of the nation’s law students and produce the majority of the country’s lawyers and judges, as well as many of its lawmakers. The mission of AALS is to uphold and advance excellence in legal education. In support of this mission, AALS promotes the core values of excellence in teaching and scholarship, academic freedom, and diversity, including diversity of backgrounds and viewpoints, while seeking to improve the legal profession, to foster justice, and to serve our many communities–local, national and international.