Following a successful celebration of the 2019-2020 Connecticut Legal Awards, The Connecticut Law Tribune is accepting nominations in twelve categories for our sixth annual celebration of professional excellence in law. With the logistics of hosting a live event still precluded by the COVID-19 pandemic, an online ceremony is planned to mark the occasion in May 2021.

The deadline for submissions has been extended to Feb. 19, 2021. Award winners will be announced in March, and our awards gala will be held virtually on May 12, 2021.

Categories for this year’s program will be essentially the same as last year, with minor updates. One new category, Diversity Initiative, will be open to both firms and individual attorneys. We are also revisiting our two Innovators categories, which offer an opportunity for firms to highlight creative ways lawyers and firms have navigated the pandemic to keep business flowing. Lifetime Achievement and New Leaders in the Law nominations will again be accepted from firms of all sizes.

Additional categories include Game Changers, Distinguished Leaders, Giant Slayers, Best Officiators, Unsung Hero and Best Mentors. In May we will also announce the 2020-21 Attorney of the Year. Connecticut Litigation Departments, In-House Counsel and GC Impact awards remain in the mix.

Please see guidelines below for nominations in each category, but please note that these are not all the materials/responses required for submission. For the entire entry form, please visit the Connecticut Legal Awards site to see specific questions.

Lifetime Achievement Awards

Please tell us in up to 500 words about anyone living who has left a lasting imprint on the legal community of Connecticut. This category is open to a wide range of practice areas, including public and private sector; from big and small firms and corporate legal departments from all regions of the state. To nominate yourself, a friend or colleague, please submit a nomination.

Attorney of the Year

Open to all firms and lawyers. This award goes to the attorney who has had outstanding success or achievement in 2020. This can take the form of litigation or pro bono efforts, effective advocacy for legislation or social causes, tangible achievements in leadership roles in bar organizations or anything else that had a significant impact on the Connecticut legal community. To nominate yourself, a friend or colleague, please submit a nomination.

New Leaders in the Law

Open to all firms. We’re looking to spotlight lawyers under the age of 40 by the submission deadline who have excelled in the courtroom, in client service and cultivation, in service to bar associations and in performing pro bono work or community service in a volunteer capacity. It’s important to note that nominees need not excel in every one of these areas; just a one or two will suffice. Please tell us in up to 500 words why the nominee should be named one of the 2020 New Leaders in the Law. Please include a high-resolution color photo of the nominee, at least 200 dpi.

Distinguished Leaders

This recognizes lawyers who achieved impressive career results and demonstrated clear leadership skills that helped them achieve those results. Examples include--but are not limited to: winning significant cases, helping a firm grow, managing a big deal or getting a key piece of legislation passed (or defeated). Attorneys must be leaders at firms. To nominate yourself, a friend or colleague, please submit a nomination.

Diversity Initiative - Individual and Firm

Do you know a lawyer or firm who has made a significant contribution to diversity and inclusion efforts in Connecticut’s legal community? This is a new category this year and awards will be presented for both individual attorneys and law firms that have made important progress.

Litigation Departments of the Year

The Connecticut Law Tribune's Litigation Departments of the Year contest is open to any litigation law firm with a Connecticut presence. Connecticut lawyers must have had a significant impact on the work being presented, though the work does not need to have been done in Connecticut. Because many lawyers and firms have regional or national practices, we will take into account cases handled by Connecticut attorneys in out-of-state courts. The contest has two distinct categories: 1) Awards for the top overall litigation departments 2) Separate honors for departments that handle specialty litigation practice areas that may include: (a) Appellate, (b) Intellectual Property; (c) Products Liability/Mass Torts; (d) Labor and Employment; (e) Insurance; (f) Commercial Litigation; (g) Family Law; (h) Business Litigation; (i) Arbitration/ Mediation Services; (j) Personal Injury (k) White Collar/Corporate Compliance, (l) Probate and (m) solo litigation practice and (n) others to be named. You may compete in the overall category, any number of specialty categories, or a combination of the overall and specialty categories. Depending on the number and quality of entries, there may be multiple award winners in some categories. We also reserve the right to only award honorees in certain categories. To nominate a firm, please submit a nomination.

Game Changers

Do you have an attorney who has made a difference in the field of law, who has been a positive force for change? Someone who has affected public policy or best practices? Tell us in a brief write-up what this person has done to make the world of law a better place. Attorneys must be from firms with fewer than 200 lawyers.

Giant Slayer

David-vs.-Goliath scenarios are what we’re looking for here. As the legal landscape continues to change dramatically, midsize and small firms are increasingly finding themselves competing against much larger firms and with much higher stakes than ever before. Did an attorney at your firm have a major role in taking down a powerful foe, or otherwise overcoming long odds? How did this play out? Attorneys must be from firms with fewer than 200 lawyers. To nominate yourself, a friend or colleague, please submit a nomination.

Best Officiators

Is there a judge, or retired judge practicing as a mediator or arbitrator, you would call out for exceptionally poignant and effective work? Tell us which officiator went above and beyond the call of duty to be fair and judicious in the process of decision making. To nominate yourself, a friend or colleague, please submit a nomination.

Unsung Hero

Choose an attorney who has gone unnoticed for, or worked behind the scenes on, particularly important work. Attorneys must be from firms with fewer than 200 lawyers. To nominate yourself, a friend or colleague, please submit a nomination.

Best Mentors

Succession planning is crucial for midsize and small firms. In addition, more and more young lawyers are being drawn to these firms for the opportunity to get hands-on legal training. Best Mentors honors those more senior attorneys who have taken it upon themselves to prepare the next generation of leaders. We are looking for a sage here, someone who has provided valuable knowledge to younger attorneys, paving the way for advancement and stellar contributions to the industry. Attorneys must be from firms with fewer than 200 lawyers. To nominate yourself, a friend or colleague, please submit a nomination.

In-House Departments of the Year

The Connecticut Law Tribune will honor the best legal departments in Connecticut and is seeking help in determining the deserving companies. To be considered for the awards, send us an essay to nominate a corporate legal department that is Connecticut-situated or with a nexus to Connecticut. Anyone is welcome to submit a nomination, including law firms and the legal departments themselves. The questions are grouped into six (6) categories, and a separate award will be given for each. You may answer for all six (6) categories, or you may confine your answers to one specific category or more.

GC Impact

This recognizes an in-house lawyer who had a significant accomplishment in 2019-20. To nominate yourself, a friend or colleague, please submit a nomination.


Solo/Small Firm Innovators

An individual practitioner or local practice that is tackling legal and/or business of law issues creatively, be that through technology, networking, design, communications or other areas. Five individual and/or small firm winners.

Law Firm/Legal Department Innovators

A Connecticut law firm or corporate legal department employing a creative and inspiring approach to technology, communications, litigation funding, organizational growth or other areas deserving of recognition for forward thinking. Five law firm and/or corporate legal department winners.

If you have any questions, please contact managing editor Michael Marciano at

If you start your nominations now you will receive notifications so you don't forget the deadline! You can also go in just to check out the form and complete at a later date (as long as it's submitted before the deadline).