Liberty Bell Award
The Liberty Bell Award was endorsed by the American Bar Association in 1964 for use by bar organizations nationally to acknowledge community members who perform outstanding community service, strengthen our system of justice, and contribute to a greater understanding of American law. The Liberty Bell Award is traditionally part of the American Bar Association’s Law Day celebration, which celebrates the role of law in our society.
The Liberty Bell Award honors a person who contributes to a greater understanding of the legal system, and the St. Petersburg Bar Foundation, as well as numerous bar organizations nationwide, presents the award annually to a non-lawyer who promotes a better understanding to the rule of law, encourages greater respect for the law and the courts, and inspires a sense of civic responsibility.
The Liberty Bell Award recipient is honored each year in May at the Annual Law Day Luncheon and in November at Pillars of Justice. All Liberty Bell Award recipients are inscribed on the St. Petersburg Bar Foundation Pillars of Justice monument displayed at Stetson University College of Law.
Any non-lawyer residing in Pinellas County who has rendered exceptional community service and otherwise meets the criteria can be considered by the Selection and Nomination Committees for receipt of the Liberty Bell Award.
Heroes Among Us Award
The Heroes Among Us Award was established by the St. Petersburg Bar Foundation in 2005. Since then, the St. Petersburg Bar Foundation has recognized attorneys who give their time and talents to the community on an annual basis. Recipients of the Heroes Among Us Award are honored at an event that showcases their contributions.
Award recipients are also honored on a St. Petersburg Bar Foundation Heroes Among Us monument at Stetson University College of Law in Gulfport, Florida.
Judge Thomas E. Penick, Jr. Award for Community Service
The Thomas E. Penick, Jr. Award for Community Service was originally established by the St. Petersburg Bar Association in 2001. The St. Petersburg Bar Foundation has been instrumental in growing the funds available for this award, and eventually endowing it at Stetson University College of Law, where it is awarded to a graduating senior each year. The award honors the contributions made to our community by Circuit Court Judge Thomas E. Penick.
Joyce Ann Nelle Memorial Award
The Joyce Ann Nelle Memorial Award was established by the Foundation in 2009, in memory of Joyce Ann Nelle, after serving as Legal Assistant to Attorney William H. Walker for over 31 years. It is awarded annually to a student attending the Legal Assistant or Paralegal Studies Program at St. Petersburg College. The $1000 award recognizes a deserving student who is active in helping to make our community a better place to live and who demonstrates a superior work ethic and personal morals, and aspires to advance professionalism in the legal assistant field. Each year, the essay contest winner is invited to be recognized at the Annual Law Day Luncheon.
Teen Court Award
A cash award is given annually by the St. Petersburg Bar Foundation to an outstanding high school senior volunteer in Teen Court, which is part of the Sixth Judicial Circuit Juvenile Arbitration Program. The winner is invited to be recognized at the Annual Law Day Luncheon.
For more information on the Juvenile Arbitration Program and Teen Court, please click here.
Judge Frank H. White Diversity Scholarship
The Judge Frank H. White Diversity Scholarship was originally established by the St. Petersburg Bar Association to honor retired Pinellas Circuit Court Judge Frank H. White. Judge White, who passed away in 2012, was licensed to practice law by the Florida Bar Association in 1960, but was denied membership in the local bar association early in his legal career due to his race. The St. Petersburg Bar Foundation has been instrumental in growing the funds available for this award, and eventually endowing it at Stetson University College of Law, where it is awarded annually to a minority law student each year.
A Legacy of Courage, Vision & Hope – African Americans in the Legal Community in Pinellas County
The first of its kind in Florida, this Exhibit was created by the St. Petersburg Bar Association Diversity Committee in 2002, and its purpose is to advance awareness of African American history in the legal profession, encourage minority students to pursue careers in the legal profession, and promote a sense of accomplishment in our community. The Exhibit features pioneers such as Fred G. Minnis, Sr., Judge James B. Sanderlin, C. Bette Wimbish, and Morris Milton, Sr. The Foundation is proud to administer this historic Exhibit, having first displayed it at the Florida Holocaust Museum, then at the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African-American Museum, and currently at the Clearwater campus of St. Petersburg College.