The American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division (ABA YLD) named Dolores Dorsainvil, a senior staff attorney in the District of Columbia Office of Bar Counsel and Co-Chair of the MSBA Young Lawyers Section’s Education Committee, a Finalist for its 2011 ABA YLD National Outstanding Young Lawyer Award. Dorsainvil was honored on February 4 at the 2012 ABA YLD’s Midyear Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana.
“This award means so much to me,” says Dorsainvil, who is also an appointed member of both the MSBA Standing Committee on Ethics and the MSBA Standing Committee on Professionalism. “It is such a great honor to serve my profession, and a real blessing when others recognize my efforts.”
The award celebrates Dorsainvil’s extensive efforts to educate fellow lawyers and law students on legal ethics so that they might avoid such pitfalls as ethical misconduct.
“I do believe that I am doing my part to maintain the integrity of such a noble profession,” asserts Dorsainvil, whose service includes regular speaking engagements at CLE and professionalism programs throughout the region.
“The administration of justice depends on the public’s perception of the lawyers’ ethical rules, as well as how those rules are enforced,” she adds. “Without sound ethics and the enforcement of proper ethical conduct, confidence in the legal process would be lost.”
“Dolores is not simply a prosecutor of attorneys,” says Erek Barron, Chair of the MSBA Young Lawyers Section, which nominated Dorsainvil. “She takes time beyond her public service job to educate and mentor attorneys on how to do their work the right way.”
The annual ABA YLD National Outstanding Young Lawyer Award recognizes “an ABA young lawyer in good standing who exhibits: professional excellence; service to the profession and the bar; service to the community; and/or a reputation for or the advancement of legal ethics and professional responsibility.” National, state, local, and specialty organizations affiliated with the ABA YLD are eligible to submit nominations, as are the ABA YLD’s Executive Board or Board of Fellows, or any ABA section, division, commission, committee, or forum. Nominees are selected based upon four factors: professional excellence; service to the profession and the bar; service to the community; and reputation for or advancement of legal ethics and professional responsibility.
“I think our Section has a tremendous amount of talent, and we take pride in having one of our own recognized,” says Barron.
This year’s top award went to Omar Alaniz, a bankruptcy attorney from Dallas, Texas. In addition to Dorsainvil, Angela Richie Stephens, a construction law attorney based in Louisville, Kentucky, was also named a Finalist for the award. All three were selected from a field of 19 young lawyers nominated by bar associations across the country.