Maryland Bar Foundation Honors Three AABA Members

In October 26, the Maryland Bar Foundation hosted its 23rd Annual Professional Legal Excellence Awards ceremony and three members of the AABA were among the honorees.
The Legal Excellence Award for the Advancement of the Rights of the Disadvantaged was presented to attorney Raymond E. DiBiagio, Jr. In 2012, Ray became a volunteer in the Foreclosure Prevention Pro Bono Project, which is coordinated by the Pro Bono Resource Center of Maryland. Ray mentors volunteers and serves as a bankruptcy resource to clients at workshops. He counsels homeowners at risk of foreclosure. He assisted in the development of an advanced training program for project volunteers that focused on Chapter 13 Bankruptcy and the intersection of foreclosure and bankruptcy.

Kathleen H. Meredith and Hon. Timothy E. Meredith received the Legal Excellence Award for the Advancement of Public Understanding of the Law in recognition of their efforts to educate high school students about the law and its direct impact on their lives. In 2000, Kathleen and Judge Meredith founded and sponsored the Anne Arundel County Bar Foundation's High School Essay contest, which has been held every year for the past 16 years. During this time, more than 2,500 public and private high school students have submitted legal essays for this contest.

Each year, Kathleen and Judge Meredith identify a U.S. Supreme Court case that has relevance for teens and young adults, and challenge students to write an essay on how the Court should rule in the case. Judge Meredith also serves on the fivemember panel of judges that reviews and scores the student essays. Finally, since founding the contest, the Merediths have donated more than $17,000 to fund the cash prizes for the top three winners.

During the Maryland Bar Foundation Awards ceremony, the Merediths were introduced by AABA member John Gardner, who noted that many winners of the essay contest had gone on to pursue careers in the law, public administration, or national security. “The contribution the Merediths have made to the public's understanding of the law with the essay contest alone has been exponential,” he said.