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Our Mission

The International Practice Management Association (IPMA) is the premier resource for information and education on the management of paralegals and other practice support professionals in law firms and law departments globally. Its mission is to advocate for the effective use and management of these professionals, to promote and enhance the proficiency and professionalism of its members, and to provide thought leadership to the membership, the legal industry and the public at large on the value of utilization and management of paralegals and other practice support professionals.

Awards Program

The IPMA awards program was implemented to recognize members' achievements in volunteerism, continuing education, community service, and pro bono activities. Award eligibility and application processes are listed below.


Community Spirit / Pro Bono Award

The Community Spirit / Pro Bono Award is designed to recognize the contributions and accomplishments of IPMA members who volunteer their time and expertise or provide valuable pro bono legal services in the "public good" to their respective communities, to a nationally recognized cause, or for people who are disenfranchised due to lack of adequate income due to being a member of a special population (i.e. homeless, AIDS patients, domestic violence victims or the elderly). Examples would include, but are not limited to the following:

  1. Participating as a member on a Board of Directors for a school or library.
  2. Getting involved in an organization to promote awareness of legislative action regarding a medical breakthrough such as AIDS.
  3. Being a boy/girl scout leader, or a big brother/big sister.
  4. Volunteering for charitable or not-for-profit organizations, such as Gilda's Club or the American Cancer Society.
  5. Assisting the elderly with the preparation of specific legal documents/forms.
  6. Participating in an AIDS Walk to raise money for awareness.

Requirements

The nominee must have played a significant role in creating, developing, supporting, or promoting an important initiative or made a significant contribution that positively impacts his/her community, organization, or cause and must have been involved with the respective organization for at least one year. Any regular, associate, life, or emeritus member or an individual who is employed by a company where there is a business partner membership may qualify and/or apply for the award.

General Criteria for the Award

The general criteria required for determination of the award recipient shall include, but not be limited to the following:

  1. The nominee must have provided a service or demonstrated a positive impact to the community/organization/committee that resulted in the accomplishment of a significant goal or successful result.
  2. The nominee must have enhanced the pro bono services rendered to the community/organization/committee.
  3. The nominee must have been involved in pro bono legal services designed to target that portion of the population that cannot otherwise afford to seek legal assistance.
  4. The individual must exhibit outstanding commitment to volunteer or pro bono services.

The award shall not be based solely on the number of people for whom the services were offered nor on the number of hours provided. It is designed to acknowledge the dedication and motivation of individual paralegal or practice support managers by their own efforts or their employer.

The award recipient shall receive a $200 gift to be given to the charity/not-for-profit organization of their choice. The recipient will also be honored at the Annual IPMA Conference & Expo and will receive a gift in recognition of the award.

Nominations

Nominations may be made by any regular, associate, life, or emeritus member or an individual who is employed by a company where there is a business partner membership. The Awards Committee will also consider self-nominations.

Community Spirit / Pro Bono Nomination Forms are Available Here!

Selection Process

The Awards Committee will select the award recipient and announce the winner at the Annual IPMA Conference & Expo. The Awards Committee may designate up to two (2) recipients for the award each year. The Awards Committee may choose to not present this award as its discretion.

Past Community Spirit / Pro Bono Award Recipients

2005 | Julie A. Meckstroth, Deborah Thompson - Community Spirit
2006 | Elizabeth A. Gillis, Laurie P. Roselle - Community Spirit; Tracy A. O'Keefe - Pro Bono
2007 | Linda G. Mitchell - Community Spirit; Joyce M. McGuiney - Pro Bono
2008 | Lori DiCesare - Community Spirit
2009 | Chantal Emond - Community Spirit
2010 | Elise B. Brickner-Schulz - Community Spirit
2013 | Debra A. Panger
2015 | Anthony Iannini


On the Spot Award

The On the Spot Award was created to let the IPMA membership-at-large select and honor individuals who contribute to the IPMA at a level above and beyond what is expected. He/she is most likely someone who prefers to contribute to the organization by quietly working in the background and is someone you believe has helped make the IPMA the outstanding organization it is. This is the time to acknowledge those who consistently give more and exceed all expectations. Winners will be selected by the Awards Committee on a year-round basis. Therefore, please submit your nominations—including a short paragraph with the reasons for your nomination—to the Awards Committee at anytime throughout the year. Each recipient of the award will be given a $25 gift card in recognition of their service to the IPMA.


Rising Star Award

The Rising Star Award is designed to recognize the contributions and accomplishments of IPMA members who have demonstrated a notable commitment to the IPMA at some point during their membership.

Requirements

The nominee must have demonstrated a commitment to the IPMA by developing notable innovations, actively participating in IPMA Committees and/or their Chapter, and helping to promote the IPMA and its value to other professionals. Any regular, associate, academic, individual business partner or individual representative of a corporate business partner may qualify and/or apply for the Rising Star Award.

General Criteria for the Award

The general criteria required for determination of the award recipient shall include, but not be limited to the following:

  1. The nominee must be a current IPMA member who is not a member of the Board of Directors at the time of their nomination.
  2. The nominee must have made a significant contribution to the IPMA.
  3. The nominee must exhibit outstanding commitment to the IPMA.

The award recipient will be honored at the Annual IPMA Conference & Expo and will receive a gift in recognition of the award.

Nominations

Nominations may be made by any regular, associate, academic, life, or emeritus member or an individual business partner or a representative of a corporate business partner. The Awards Committee will also consider self-nominations.

Rising Star Nomination Forms are Available Here!

Selection Process

The Awards Committee will select the award recipient and honor him or her at the Annual IPMA Conference & Expo with a gift in recognition of the award. The Awards Committee may choose to not present this award at its discretion.

Past Rising Star Award Recipients

2010 | Brian J. Bernhard
2011 | L. Michel Delorme, Christine Petropoulos
2012 | Noreen A. Rechsteiner
2013 | Patricia L. Maxwell
2014 | Michelle Lewis
2015 | Carlson A. Floy
2016 | Dean Pallas


Strength of Many Award

It is often the hard work of many and not the contribution of one that makes a significant difference in the success of any organization. In recognition of the “strength of many,” the IPMA has created this award to honor a group of members who, working together, have demonstrated a special dedication and commitment to the IPMA through their creativity, initiative, and dependability.

Requirements

The group of members shall have made a significant contribution to the enrichment of the IPMA membership experience. Any group of IPMA members, the majority of whom are non-business partner members, may qualify for the Strength of Many Award.

General Criteria for the Award

The general criteria required for determination of the award recipients shall include, but not be limited to the following:

  1. The nominees will have exemplified the volunteer spirit, working as a team toward a common objective of benefit to the IPMA membership.
  2. The nominees will have made an outstanding contribution to the IPMA through their dedication of resources.
  3. The nominees will have demonstrated dedication, cooperation, creativity, and/or leadership.
  4. The nominees will have gone above and beyond and made a difference within the membership.

The winning recipients will receive a Certificate of Appreciation. In addition, the recipients will also be honored at the Annual IPMA Annual Conference & Expo.

Nominations

Any IPMA member can nominate a qualified group. The Awards Committee will also consider self-nominations.

Strength of Many Nomination Forms are Available Here!

Selection Process

The Awards Committee, with input from the Board of Directors, will select the Strength of Many Award recipients. Multiple awards may be presented. The Awards Committee may choose to not present this award at its discretion.

Past Strength of Many Award Recipients

2010 | Education Curriculum (Management Training) Committee
2011 | Atlanta Chapter
2013 | Paralegal Management Magazine Committee
2014 | Management Resources Committee


Therese A. "Teri" Cannon Educational Scholarship

The Therese A. "Teri" Cannon Educational Scholarship was created to honor Teri Cannon for her many years of dedicated service to the IPMA and to recognize her commitment to the education of paralegals, paralegal management, and practice support management. This scholarship was designed to assist members in continuing their education through advanced training.

About Therese A. Cannon, Esq.

Teri Cannon, Esq. was an Associate Director for the Commission of Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges from 2006 to 2012. Ms. Cannon was a member of the Standing Committee on Paralegals of the American Bar Association from 1996 to 2006. She also served on its Approval Commission from 1991 to 1996, the last two and a half years as chair. In addition, she served as Educational Standards Consultant to the Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California for eight years prior to assuming the position as Dean of John F. Kennedy University School of Law. Currently, Ms. Cannon is a higher education consultant.

She is a past president of the American Association of Paralegal Education and served on its Board of Directors for six years. Teri has made many contributions to the paralegal and legal profession. She was one of the original pioneer paralegals in the country. She has authored and co-authored publications on Ethics and Professional Responsibility and Paralegal Utilization.

Ms. Cannon earned her undergraduate degree at UCLA and her law degree at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles.

Qualifications

Any regular, associate, life, or emeritus member may apply for the scholarship if the cost of his/her IPMA Conference registration fee is not covered by their employer. The individual must complete the attached application form and submit it to the Awards Committee.

Apply Now! Therese A. Cannon Educational Scholarship Application Form

Scholarship Award

The scholarship recipient will receive one (1) complimentary registration to the 33rd Annual IPMA Annual Conference & Expo scheduled for October 11-13, 2017, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Selection Process

All applicants are anonymous to the Awards Committee for judging the applications. The Awards Committee will designate one (1) recipient for the scholarship award.

To allow time to plan travel arrangements, the Award recipient will be notified by September 1, 2017, and he or she will be recognized during the Awards Presentation at the Annual Conference. If the Award recipient has registered for the Annual Conference and paid for his or her registration prior to being notified on September 1, 2017, the IPMA will reimburse the award recipient for the cost of his or her registration fee.

Privacy Statement

All information provided will be kept strictly confidential by the members of the IPMA Awards Committee, Board of Directors, and Headquarters Staff.

Past Scholarship Recipients

2007 | Sybil Taylor Aytch, RP
2008 | Dawn M. DuRocher, ACP
2009 | Ashley Saba
2010 | Mary A. Kenny
2011 | Brian J. Bernhard 2012 | Kimberly U. Cooley-Reyes
2013 | Alexander S. Williams


President's Award

In 1998, then President Laurie Roselle presented the first ever IPMA President's Award. This award is given to an individual, law firm, association, or other entity that has provided outstanding service to the IPMA, the paralegal profession, or the paralegal management profession. The recipient need not be a member of IPMA. The President may solicit recommendations or nominations from the membership or the Board of Directors, but the President makes the final decision as to the recipient. The award is generally presented at the IPMA Annual Conference & Expo.

Past President's Award Recipients

1998 | Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP
1999 | Therese A. Cannon
2000 | Vicki M. Roberts
2001 | Laurie P. Roselle
2002 | Christine A. Reyonds
2003 | Marianne Gennari
2004 | Barbara J. Gaffney
2005 | Patricia A. Noske
2006 | Elise B. Brickner-Schulz
2007 | Debra A. Janko
2008 | King & Spalding
2009 | Deborah M. Clarke & Paige D. Stepan
2010 | Sylvia R. Naim, RP
2011 | Paula C. Nascimento
2012 | Joyce M. McGuiney
2013 | Marcia M. Bibb & Lynda S. McNie
2014 | Victoria L. Snook
2015 | Paige D. Stepan
2016 | Gary L. Melhuish