The University of Texas at Austin   School of Law

Hortense Ward Courageous Leader Award

The Center for Women in Law, through the Hortense Ward Courageous Leader Award, seeks to recognize on a biennial basis one outstanding woman lawyer who exemplifies Ward’s tenacity, courage, and commitment in her efforts to achieve gender parity in positions of leadership, influence, and responsibility in the legal profession as set out in the Austin Manifesto. The first recipient will be honored at the Center’s 5th Anniversary & Award Luncheon on April 11, 2014.

The nomination window for the 2014 Hortense Ward Courageous Leader Award has passed.

Nomination Criteria:

Each nominee must:

  1. Be a graduate of a law school
  2. Have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement
  3. Have a history of efforts to achieve gender parity in positions of leadership, influence, and responsibility in the legal profession, exhibited in one or more of the following ways:
    • Being a public voice for women
    • Taking specific, concrete steps to eliminate gender bias
    • Creating opportunities that advance women lawyers
    • Actively promoting minority women lawyers
  4. Commit to attend the award ceremony on April 11, 2014

NOTE:  Founding Members of the Center for Women in Law are not eligible for this award.

Nomination Procedure:

Submit a nomination form in addition to a 2-page letter that outlines specific examples of the nominee’s credentials based on the criteria above.  Supporting documents must include the nominee’s resume/curriculum vitae and at least three (but no more than five) recommendation letters from other individuals.  At least one recommendation letter must come from a woman who benefited directly from the nominee’s efforts.  The nomination packet may also include articles that display the nominee’s credentials and additional personal anecdotes.

The nomination window for the 2014 Hortense Ward Courageous Leader Award has passed.

Nomination Committee:

Linda Broocks, Committee Co-Chair

Julie A. Hardin, Committee Co-Chair

Linda L. Addison, Immediate Past President

Marilyn Aboussie | Alexandra W. Albright | Scott J. Atlas

John B. Beckworth | Linda Bray Chanow | Hilda C. Galvan

Lisa Atlas Genecov | Michelle P. Goolsby | Marcy H. Greer

Linda C. Hunsaker | Janiece M. Longoria | Meredith S. Mouer

Sandra L. Phillips | Jennifer G. Spencer

Hortense Sparks WardThe Honorable Hortense Sparks Ward (1872-1944) was an accomplished lawyer, suffragist and champion of women’s rights in Texas in the early 1900s.  Ward was the first woman to pass the Texas State Bar exam, the first woman to be admitted to the Texas State Bar, and the only woman to serve as Chief Justice of the Texas Supreme Court.  Ward campaigned tirelessly to advance women’s rights and status in Texas. Read more.


Save the Date:

5th Anniversary & Award Luncheon

Austin, TX
April 11, 2014
11:30am – 2:00pm