Media Contact

Jennifer Olegario
Communications Manager

Washington State Bar Association Honors Legal Luminaries at 2022 APEX Awards | Sept. 23, 2022

Updated: Sept. 28, 2022

Seattle, Sept. 23, 2022 — The Washington State Bar Association (WSBA) last night hosted the 2022 APEX Awards (Acknowledging Professional Excellence) to honor outstanding legal professionals and organizations and recognize their many innovative and selfless contributions to the legal profession, the law, and their communities.

The recipients were awarded in 12 categories to recognize the impacts they have had in areas such as access to justice, pro bono service, and innovation in the law.

Chief Justice Mary E. Fairhurst Award of Merit: Hon. James E. Rogers. Judge Rogers is credited with keeping the King County Supreme Court functioning throughout the pandemic, while maintaining safety for employees and the public. He led efforts to utilize technology in new ways, install HVAC filters and court ventilation systems, and create a pop-up courthouse to hold in-person jury trials with adequate social distancing. The Award of Merit is the Washington State Bar’s highest honor and was renamed this year after Chief Justice Mary E. Fairhurst, a past recipient and former State Bar president, who passed away last year.

Angelo Petruss Award for Lawyers in Government Service: Ann Lundwall. A U.S. Naval officer, lawyer, advocate, and even children’s book author, Lundwall is “an unsung hero and a treasure to the United States military and the Washington legal profession.” Her work to fight for survivors of sexual assault has been nothing short of prolific, being hand-picked to be a founding member of the Navy JAG Corps Victim Legal Counsel Program and fighting for more than 200 survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence.

Justice C.Z. Smith Excellence in Diversity Award: QLaw Foundation of Washington. For successfully providing pro bono legal services through the LGBTQ+ Legal Clinic, QLaw was instrumental in helping to protect vulnerable members of the community during the pandemic. The clinic offers free consultations with volunteer attorneys and provides potential legal solutions or referrals, which QLaw pivoted to telephone consultations, as well as provided COVID-19 resources on its website to counter the disproportionate effects the pandemic has had on the LGBTQ+ community.

Legal Innovation Award: Davis Wright Tremaine LLP. The firm has led the way to build a variety of programs and initiatives aimed at reimagining how pro bono services are delivered to underrepresented and marginalized communities. Davis Wright Tremaine simultaneously shared the lessons it has learned with countless others. Its Pro Bono and Social Impact Department, for example, helped in-house legal departments at major companies like Amazon, Bloomberg, JP Morgan Chase, Meta, Microsoft, and many others, by providing direct assistance and fostering pro bono partnerships.

Lifetime Service Award: Gail R. Smith. With an impressive list of pro bono work with groups such as Skagit Legal Aid (formerly the Skagit Volunteer Lawyer Program), the Northwest Justice Project, WSBA Legal Aid Committee, WSBA Pro Bono and Legal Aid Committee, Washington Pro Bono Council (since its founding in 2014), and Campaign for Equal Justice, Smith is known for his dedication to giving back. He has mentored new and experienced attorneys, passing on the lessons he learned as a young lawyer and spreading a passion for equal justice.

Norm Maleng Leadership Award, Presented jointly with the Access to Justice Board: Riddhi Mukhopadhyay. Those who have worked with Riddhi Mukhopadhyay, director of the Sexual Violence Law Center (SVLC), have lavished praise on their leader, saying that working with her is a “privilege,” that she “has created a space for me to feel inspired,“ and that she “never backs down from injustice, wherever it may be found.” Mukhopadhyay centers work on survivors, not by trying to be their voice, but amplifying their voices inside and outside of the courtroom.

Outstanding Judge Award: Hon. Anita Crawford-Willis. Judge Anita Crawford-Willis is known for her compassion, drive, and, perhaps most of all, for being a role model. Since 2017, Judge Crawford-Willis has sat on the Seattle Municipal Court where she has been vital to programs that expand the court’s resource center to provide community services to those who need it most. She is deeply committed to bringing about gender and racial equity and justice for all and has persistently called on others to be allies.

Outstanding Young Lawyer Award: Sofia M. Pasarow. “A natural born leader,” according to colleagues, Pasarow has earned widespread respect as someone who fosters an environment of collegiality, provides guidance in complex cases, and builds a cohesive teams. Pasarow led fellow attorneys with the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner in the 2022 legislative session handle a large volume of requests for legislative analyses and fiscal notes on the resources required to handle additional consumer protection needs for Washingtonians.

Pro Bono and Public Service Award (Group): Sexual Violence Law Center. The Sexual Violence Law Center’s (SVLC) holistic approach to pro bono legal services for survivors of gender-based violence has been called “a model for what we should be doing. SVLC amplifies survivors’ voices, protects their dignity, seeks justice, and fights for a world without sexual violence.” The organization is a leader in the civil legal aid field and a statewide legal aid organization focused on survivors.

Pro Bono and Public Service Award (Individual): William E. L. Hayden. Hayden has been widely recognized for the tremendous pro bono support he provides to veterans both personally and by connecting his colleagues with pro bono opportunities, including leading Microsoft to partner with the National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP). A 21-year active and reserve member of the United States Navy, Hayden has provided hundreds of hours of personal pro bono work and advocacy.

Professionalism Award: Mark J. Fucile. Fucile’s prolific body of work—beyond being a cofounder of the firm Fucile & Reising LLP and an adjunct instructor of legal ethics for the University of Oregon School of Law—includes a regular column for Washington State Bar News (Ethics & the Law) and Multnomah Lawyer (Ethics Focus), as well as frequent contributions to NWSidebar, Oregon State Bar Bulletin, and Idaho State Bar Advocate. Fucile’s body of work on legal ethics, law firm risk management, and attorney-client privilege includes more than 250 articles and book chapters.

Sally P. Savage Leadership in Philanthropy Award, Presented jointly with the Washington State Bar Foundation: Amanda DuBois. Now in its seventh year of operation, DuBois’ Civil Survival Project has positively impacted the lives of countless formerly incarcerated individuals and brought about legislative reform. In addition to writing manuals addressing common legal issues in layperson’s terms, DuBois created workshops to teach formerly incarcerated people how the legislature works and how to tell their stories in order to educate legislators about the difficulties formerly incarcerated people face.

A recording of the full APEX Awards show is available at Individual videos honoring each APEX award winner can be found on the Washington State Bar Association YouTube channel.


About the Washington State Bar Association

The WSBA operates under the delegated authority of the Washington Supreme Court and exercises a governmental function authorized by the Court to license and regulate the state’s nearly 40,000 legal professionals, including lawyers, limited practice officers, and limited license legal technicians. The WSBA both regulates legal professionals under the authority of the Court and serves its members as a professional association — all without public funding. The WSBA administers the Bar admission process, including the bar exam; provides record-keeping and licensing functions; administers the lawyer discipline system; and provides continuing legal education for legal professionals, in addition to numerous other educational and member-service activities. The Bar’s mission is to serve the public and its members, to ensure the integrity of the legal profession, and to champion justice.