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Each year, the Florida Justice Association recognizes those who have dedicated their lives to their profession and FJA’s mission to preserve and protect Florida’s civil justice system.

The Founders’ Awards allow us to commemorate the legacy of the Founders of the FJA and the admirable characteristics they demonstrated.

At the FJA Annual Convention, we honor the leadership of members who have dedicated themselves to defending the rights of Florida citizens, and carrying out the mission of the organization. Thank you to those who continue to help guide the future of the Florida Justice Association.

Jimmy Gustafson
Perry Nichols Award

2020 Recipient: James W. Gustafson

The Perry Nichols Award is the highest honor the FJA bestows and gives recognition to an individual who has dedicated a lifetime to the pursuit of justice through extended and distinguished service to the cause of justice in Florida and in the nation.

Tom Edwards
Al J. Cone Lifetime Achievement Award

2020 Recipient: Thomas S. Edwards, Jr.

The Al J. Cone Lifetime Achievement Award honors Al J. Cone who lived a life of the following:

  • A career of leadership
  • A career of example setting
  • A career of devotion
  • A career of courage
Carey Thomas
B.J. and Tom Masterson Award for Professionalism

2020 Recipient: Thomas W. Carey

In honor of B.J. Masterson, former FJA President, and Thomas Masterson, son of B.J. and FJA member since 1975. This award is presented to an attorney who, like B.J. and Tom, epitomizes ethical professionalism and is a model to which all lawyers should aspire.

Brad Edwards
Jon E. Krupnick Award

2020 Recipient: Bradley J. Edwards

The Jon E. Krupnick Award is awarded for efforts on behalf of a particular client reflecting relentless commitment, perseverance and fortitude to seek justice and achieve success through all obstacles and legal roadblocks encountered.

Andrew Harris
The S. Victor Tipton Award

2020 Recipient: Andrew Harris

The S. Victor Tipton Award is awarded for superior achievement in legal writing. This award is given in honor of S. Victor Tipton, Founder and Editor of the FJA’s Journal. Tipton is also a founding member and former President of the Florida Justice Association®. Tipton has been a valuable voice and guiding spirit for the FJA since its inception.

Damian Mallard
Rising Star Award

2020 Recipient: Damiam Mallard

The Rising Star Award (created in 2012) recipient should show exemplary promise as a future leader of the Florida Justice Association®; who demonstrates a commitment to developing legal, legislative, and civic responsibility in themselves and others; whose work reflects a strong emphasis on defending the civil justice system.

Mickey Smiley Award

2020 Recipient:
Recipient is pending announcement

This award is presented by the Young Lawyers’ Section to an FJA member who has gone above and beyond the call of duty to help Young Lawyers improve their legal skills and become great professionals.

Cornerstone Award

2020 Recipients:
Matthew Kaplan, Beth Finizio, Laurie Briggs, Eddie Farah, Tiffany Faddis, Jim Guarnieri, Doug Beam

In 2014, the FJA created the “Cornerstone Award” to recognize our leaders’ efforts in recruiting members. This award recognizes the members who have worked tirelessly to set the Cornerstones upon which our great association is built and maintained.

President's Award

2020 Recipients:
Recipient is pending announcement

This award, presented by the outgoing FJA President, recognizes an individual who has supported and assisted the President tremendously during their term.

EAGLE Recruiting Champion

2020 Recipient:
Fred Cunningham

This award recognizes the efforts of one individual who enables the growth of the FJA EAGLE program through tireless recruitment of new contributors to the FJA, and encourages new leadership into our organization. Each year, Trevor Goring of the Trial Lawyer National Portrait Gallery provides a limited edition print on canvas to the recipient. This year’s print is titled “The Holdout Juror”, and depicts a lone holdout juror in a room of others pushing for a quick guilty verdict.

EAGLE Legends

2020 Recipients:
Robert Joyce, Leslie Kroeger, Steve Maher, Scott Smith, Client Legal Funding, Universal Court Reporting

Becoming an EAGLE Legend means that you have given $100,000 or more over a lifetime to the Florida Justice Association. It demonstrates a great degree of commitment to the organization and the preservation of the civil justice system. EAGLEs at this level have emerged as true legacies in their craft.

EAGLE Awards


2020 Recipients:
Richard Chait, Jim Guarnieri, Leslie Kroeger, Trey Lytal, Ricardo Martinez-Cid, Troy Rafferty, Robert Rubenstein, Eric Romano

The FJA Gold EAGLE Award winners set a standard for leadership in their region by donating their time to raise EAGLE pledges as well as making their own generous contributions. They gain distinction at the highest level of EAGLE recruiting and fundraising.


Silver EAGLE

2020 Recipients:
Clif Curry, Tiffany Faddis, Chris Ligori, Alistair McKenzie, John Mills, Curry Pajcic, Tony Quackenbush

The Silver EAGLE recipients are those members who go above and beyond the call of duty and contribute immensely to our EAGLE efforts. They have stepped up in a big way to meet the needs of our organization.

Bronze 1

Bronze EAGLE

2020 Recipients:
Laurie Briggs, Pete Hunt, William Merlin, Todd Michaels, Stuart Ratzan, John Romano, Dale Swope, Ben Whitman, Greg Yaffa

The Bronze EAGLE recipients are those members who go to great lengths by contributing time and money to our cause. Many of these members have been very involved in EAGLE over the years and continue to be active in EAGLE. Other recipients recognized here are the up & coming fundraisers of our association and we deeply appreciate them.