The American College of Trial Lawyers is filled with smart people, including the brightest lawyers in the United States and Canada. We knew that. But the college is even wiser than we suspected. The proof? The ACTL chose last week to induct our beloved Natasha Silas into its hallowed ranks, ranks that include Don Samuel and Rick Deane. The ACTL imprimatur is rare indeed. Membership may not exceed one percent of the total lawyer population in any state or province. You will find a list of the 2018 class of inductees here.
The official induction charge included this fine description of Tasha: “You, whose names are freshly inscribed upon our rolls have, by your mastery of the art of advocacy, by your high degree of personal integrity, your maturity in practice and your signal triumphs at the bar of justice, earned the honor about to be conferred upon you. By your ability, learning and character you have added lustre to the legal and judicial annals of your state, and have helped to strengthen and to preserve the mighty fabric of our law.”
One member of the ACTL selection committee wrote this note to Tasha: “There are many very talented and successful trial lawyers that do not make the cut. It requires more than talent or courtroom success. Integrity, professionalism, ability, and a history of dedication to something more than yourself are the traits they look for. You absolutely deserve the recognition.”
At the Hall of Fame ceremony in Phoenix, Arizona, the ACTL fellows feted Tasha (and Kendal, too!). Tasha took a photograph with Rick Deane, and then stood on the stage with her two fellow Georgia inductees, including George Lawson.
Our protagonist later offered these ever-so-humble remarks to your Blue Notes Blog correspondent:
Thank you very much for the shout out. This is a pretty incredible and unexpected honor. The thing is, though, that I would never be the advocate that I have become were it not for the acceptance and encouragement that I have found here at the Federal Defender Program. In my judgment, my colleagues here are second to none in their selfless, creative, and enthusiastic advocacy. We take pride in challenging each other every single day to do more and to go further in our quest to find better ways to help our clients. I am very fortunate to have found a place in such a group.
Tasha once carried the drum major baton for the inimitable Frederick Douglass High School Marching Band. And for nearly 25 years, she has held the baton for her admiring peers in the Northern District of Georgia and beyond. The ACTL can now bask in Tasha’s reflected glory, too, just like we all do every day. ¡Felicitaciones, Tasha!