Law Day 2010 (and earlier)

The 2010 Law Day Banquet was held on May 3 at Maceli's Banquet Hall.

This year's Law Day theme was Law in the 21st Century: Enduring Traditions, Emerging Challenge. Kansas Attorney General Steve Six was the featured speaker.

The topic for the 2010 Legal Essay contest was Constitutional Limits of Search and Seizure in Public Schools: What Should They Be? The Essay Contest winners were:

First Place - Dylan Brooks, Lawrence Free State High School;
Second Place - Molly Bostwick, Baldwin High School; and
Third Place - Lauren Barnes, Baldwin High School.

The essays are available at the Douglas County Law Library.

Lewis “Wimp” Roberts of Lawrence was selected posthumously as the winner of the 2010 Liberty Bell Award. Mr. Roberts served the 7th Judicial District for ten years as a bailiff and eleven years as a Bond Coordinator. During his service as a bailiff, Mr. Roberts worked hard to maintain the integrity of the jury, to ensure the Court's orders were followed and that jury service was as enjoyable for the jurors as possible. As a Bond Coordinator, he conducted inmate jail intake interviews for Court Services which were used by the Courts to determine appropriate bond amounts. Mr. Roberts always treated all those with whom he came into contact with empathy and respect. His wife, Mary Lou Roberts, accepted the award on his behalf.

Law Day 2009

The 2009 Law Day Banquet was held on May 1 at Maceli's Banquet Hall. This year's theme was A Legacy of Liberty — Celebrating Lincoln's Bicentennial.

The 2009 Liberty Bell Award was presented to Dan Affalter who recently retired from the Lawrence Police Department with the rank of Captain after 32 years of service. Captain Dan Ward of the Lawrence Police Department accepted the award for Affalter who was undergoing cancer treatment and unable to attend in person. Affalter has been actively involved in the Lawrence community beyond his service in law enforcement. He has served as Regional Coordinator of the Wildlife and Parks Dept. Hunter’s Education Program, served on the Board of Directors of Shelter, Inc., which provides adoption services for foster families in Lawrence, and worked in various leadership positions with the Boy Scouts of America. Recently, Affalter was a finalist for the Fraternal Order of Police Member of the Year Award, and also received the Lawrence Bank Star of Excellence Award. Through his professionalism, integrity, and commitment to improving the community in which he lived and worked, he exemplifies the ideals for which the Liberty Bell Award stands.

The other highlight of the banquet was the presentation of scholarships to the winners of the Annual Essay Contest. This year's essay topic was The Significance of Separation of Church and State in Our Government. The winners of the Second Annual Douglas County Legal Essay Contest were:

First Place - Hannah Kapp-Klote, Lawrence Free State High School;
Second Place - Nash Riggins, Lawrence Free State High School; and
Third Place - Colin Busby, Baldwin High School.

The essays are available at the Douglas County Law Library.

Law Day 2008

The 2008 Law Day banquet at Maceli's Banquet Hall featured a presentation by Katherine Kirk on "The Rule of Law in Jordanian Society". Along with a slide presentation, Kathy described her three months in Jordan as a volunteer in the ABA's Rule of Law Initiative, a public service project of the American Bar Association dedicated to promoting the rule of law around the world.

Marianne Schroer, a senior at Baldwin High School, was awarded a $1,100.00 scholarship for her winning essay in the Douglas County Legal Essay Contest.

The 2008 Liberty Bell Award was presented to Johanna J. ("Jo") Bryant, who served as President/CEO of Douglas County United Way from 1981-1986 and 1998-2008. United Way has provided assistance for several programs of interest to the courts and the bar in Douglas County, including CASA, Ballard Community Services, Big Brothers/BigSisters, Success By 6 Coalition and others.

Law Day 2007

The 2007 Law Day banquet was again held at Maceli's Banquet Hall, 1031 New Hampshire Street in Lawrence on May 1, 2007.

The keynote address was presented by retired Shawnee County District Court Judge Hon. Terry Bullock on this year's Law Day theme: Liberty Under the Law: Empowering Youth, Assuring Democracy.

Prof. Joyce McCray-Pearson of the Kansas University School of Law was the recipient of the 2007 Liberty Bell Award. Prof. McCray-Pearson is director of the KU Law Library, and teaches Law & Literature and Advanced Legal Research at the Law School. She was instrumental in establishing the Douglas County Law Library, housed at the Judicial Center, which provides legal research tools and resources to local judges, lawyers and the community. Following the library's launch on May 1, 2003, she has continued to advise the board, contributing her talents and abilities to the continuing growth and vitality of the library. Her commitment and passion for education, and her efforts to promote better understanding of the law by making research tools and resources available to all, made her a worthy recipient of the Liberty Bell Award.

Law Day 2006

Law Day 2006 was held on May 1, 2006 at Maceli's Banquet Hall, 1031 New Hampshire St. in Lawrence. The Law Day 2006 theme was Liberty Under Law: Separate Branches, Balanced Powers. Attendees were treated to a presentation by Lawrence attorney and State Representative Paul Davis. Joyce Grover was the recipient of the 2006 Liberty Bell Award.

Law Day 2005

Law Day 2005 was held on May 2, 2005 at Maceli's Banquet Hall, 1031 New Hampshire St. in Lawrence. The 2005 Law Day theme was "The American Jury: We the People in Action". Attendees were treated to a presentation by Pedro Irigonegaray, a prominent litigator. In addition to remarks about the role of the jury in democracy, he had a few things to say about the debate over evolution vs. "intelligent design" in Kansas public school curricula.

Justice Robert L. Gernon, the speaker at the 2004 Law Day banquet, was the posthumous recipient of the 2005 Liberty Bell Award. Justice Gernon died on March 30, 2005.

Law Day 2004

Law Day 2004 was organized by the Young Lawyers Section of the Douglas County Bar Association, Hatem B. Chahine, President. The event was held on May 3, 2004 at Marceli's Banquet Hall, 1031 New Hampshire St., Lawrence, Kansas, with over 65 in attendance.

The 2004 Law Day theme was "To Win Equity by Law: Brown v. Board at 50". Justice Robert L. Gernon of the Kansas Supreme Court was the featured speaker. The event was highlighted by the presentation of the 2004 Liberty Bell Award to co-recipients Sammie Jo Conder and Sherrill L. Catt, Supervisors of the Douglas County CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) program.

Law Day 2003

Law Day 2003, whose theme was "Celebrate Your Freedom -- Independent Courts Protect Our Liberties", was organized by the Young Lawyers Section under the leadership of Angela Stoller. The 2003 Liberty Bell Award was presented to Diane Simpson, attorney at the firm of Stevens & Brand, Lawrence, Kansas.

Law Day 2000

The Law Day 2000 recipient of the Liberty Bell Award was Lynne Green, founder of the Van Go Mobile Arts programs. Van Go Mobile Arts, Inc. is an arts-based social service agency that uses the creative process to build inner resources and deter high risk behaviors in young people. Using community support services and teaching-artists, Van Go programs provide life-enhancing opportunities for youth, ages 8-18, with after-school and summer programs. The 2000 Law Day theme was: "Celebrate Your Freedom: Speak Up for Democracy and Diversity".

Law Day in the 1990's

The 1999 Liberty Bell Award was presented to Marion Springer, Founding Member of Citizens Review Board and President of Kansas Action for Children.

Melissa Masoner received the Liberty Bell Award in 1998, in recognition of her work establishing KidsVoting across the state.

State Representative Barbara Ballard was given the 1996 Liberty Bell Award for her activities in the community and the Legislature.

The 1996 Law Day was reported in the Lawrence Journal-World.

Hon. Jean F. Shepherd, Judge of Division 3 of the Douglas County District Court, received the Liberty Bell Award in 1992.

The 1991 Liberty Bell Award went to co-recipients Mary McDowell and Sally Six Hersh. Hersh, a teacher at West Junior High School, won 20 drama and teaching awards, including the Kansas Governor's Scholar Teacher, Most Influential in Education of Students. She passed away in 2001. McDowell, an attorney, was recognized for her efforts to establish a Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) program in Douglas County.

The 1989 Liberty Bell Award was presented to Anne B. "Petey" Cerf, founder of Kansas Advocates for Better Care, as reported in this Lawrence Journal-World article. Other Liberty Bell Award recipients include Nancy Hughes, Judith W. Osborn (now Judith W. Anderson, and John William Hamilton, District Court bailiff from 1973 to 1994. Mr. Hamilton died at age 90 in 2001.