Temple Law dean given '14 Justice Sonia Sotomayor Diversity Award

By Jon Campisi | Mar 6, 2014

JoAnne Epps, the dean of Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, has

been named the 2014 Justice Sonia Sotomayor Diversity Award winner by the Philadelphia Bar Association, the law school recently announced.

Epps will receive the award during the bar association’s quarterly meeting and luncheon slated for March 11.

The award, named for sitting U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, honors an individual who has demonstrated a strong commitment and has made significant contributions to diversity and promoting “full and equal participation and inclusion in the legal profession,” according to the Temple Law.

Epps, who for years has been a champion for women and minorities in the legal profession, is a three-time honoree by Lawyers of Color Magazine as one of the 100 most influential black attorneys in the nation, according to the law school.

She is also a member of the Consortium for Women’s Leadership, which is based at the Center for Women in Law at the University of Texas School of Law, and she belongs to the board of the National Association of Women Lawyers Foundation.

Epps is also active in the American Law Institute.

Five years ago, Epps was recognized by the Philadelphia Bar Association with the Sandra Day O’Connor Award, which is given annually to a female lawyer who has demonstrated “superior legal talent, achieved significant legal accomplishments and has furthered the advancement of women in both the profession and the community,” according to Temple Law.

The dean was also previously bestowed with the Doris May Harris Image Award from the National Bar Association’s Women Lawyers Division, and she has been a recipient of the National Black Prosecutors’ Association Award, the Barrister’s Association of Philadelphia’s Women of Distinction Award and as a Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania.

Epps recently completed longstanding service in various roles with the American Bar Association, such as the group’s Standing Committee on Constitution and Bylaws, the Standing Committee on Continuing Legal Education, and the Presidential Commission on the Impact of the Economic Crisis on the legal Profession and Legal Needs.

She also spent 11 years as an officer of the American Bar Association Section of Litigation.

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