The Southeastern chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates has honored Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice Gary Wade and Davidson County Circuit Judge Joe P. Binkley, Jr.
At the Annual Conference of the Southeastern Chapters of the American Board of Trial Advocates (SEABOTA) in Nashville, Chief Justice Wade, of Sevier County, was named the organizations 2014 Appellate Judge of the Year.
SEABOTA President Wayne Ritchie, a Knoxville attorney, presented the award to Chief Justice Wade for exemplary integrity and impartiality and for dedication to task and diligence to duty in the advancement of the cause of justice in Tennessee.
SEABOTA also gave special recognition and honorary membership to Judge Binkley of Nashville, a long-term and respected trial attorney in Nashville before beginning his career on the bench. Judge Binkley enjoys the reputation of working long hours in the courtroom in an effort to assure the timely disposition of both civil and criminal cases.
The program featured former United States Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor and actor Fred Thompson, a former United States Senator.
The purposes of the national organization, which includes attorneys from all areas of the practice of law, are to elevate the standards of honor and courtesy in the legal profession, to preserve the constitutional right to jury, and to assure a fair and impartial judiciary. Ritchie remarked that Chief Justice Wade, an appellate judge for over 26 years, embodied the principles of the American Board of Trial Advocates.
Other honors included:
- Chief Judge Karen Bowdre of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Alabama was named SEABOTAs Trial Judge of the Year.
- Tom Humphreys, a veteran political reporter for the Knoxville News Sentinel, was named the Print Journalist of the Year and Nick Beres, a Nashville reporter, received the Broadcast Journalist of the Year award.
- Aubrey Harwell, the managing partner of Nashville firm Neal and Harwell, gained recognition as SEABOTA's 2014 Trial Attorney of the Year. Mr. Harwell, a graduate of the Vanderbilt School of Law, specializes in commercial litigation, white collar criminal defense, and crisis management. He is widely regarded as one of the premier litigators in the United States.