Awards Criteria

Setting the Standard


Do you know a civic-minded attorney committed to serving the community? Consider nominating them for one of our awards.  

 Ritter Award

The highest honor awarded by the Foundation. This award is given for a lifetime of service. The award recognizes the accomplishments of the honoree in attaining and promoting the highest level of professionalism, integrity and ethics in the practice of law while assisting other attorneys, the courts and the public to envision and cause changes which improve the justice system in Ohio.

 Ramey Award for Distinguished Community Service

Given annually to an Ohio attorney whose career has been exemplified by: dedication of the goals and values sought to be furthered by the Foundation; a lifetime of service to the public and the community; and integrity, honor, courtesy and professionalism. This service must be outside the recipients' practice of law and must be given without compensation.

NEW in 2021 – in line with the OSBF’s Racial Justice Initiative (RJI), nominees for the Ramey Award will have given their time to community service and/or programs that advance change in the legal system for historically marginalized communities of color in Ohio. 

 Outstanding Program or Organization Award

Given annually to a program or organization that promotes the dissemination of information about, increase access to, and/or generates improvements in the Ohio justice system.  

NEW in 2021 – in line with the OSBF’s Racial Justice Initiative (RJI), nominees for the Outstanding Program or Organization Award will have worked towards and/or have made significant gains in the pursuit of justice and public understanding of the law for historically marginalized communities of color in Ohio. 

 Community Service Award for Attorneys 40 & Under

This award is presented to attorneys, 40 years of age or younger, who contribute substantial time and effort in service to a local social service, or a local civic, artistic or cultural organization. The service must be outside the recipients’ practice of law and must be given without compensation. Emphasis is placed on current service. Recipients should represent the ideals of the legal profession and, by example, be a credit to the profession. NOTE: This award is presented to honorees in each of the OSBA Districts. The statewide award recipient is chosen from these district honorees.

 THE JOHN AND GINNY ELAM PRO BONO AWARD

NOTE: this award is not presented by the Ohio State Bar Foundation. However, the awardee will be honored at the Annual Awards Ceremony.

The award recognizes a lawyer's exceptional pro bono legal work in the State of Ohio, which may consist of pro bono representation necessary to make the system of justice available to all, support to organizations that provide pro bono representation to indigent clients, or time and skills donated to the community, government, and other activities that promote the common good.