IndyBar Names Dickson and Kappes Recipients of 2014 Professionalism Awards

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The IndyBar Professionalism Committee has named Chief Justice Brent Dickson of the Indiana Supreme Court the 2014 recipient of the Silver Gavel Award, while Philip “Skip” Kappes of Lewis & Kappes has been awarded the bar’s Professionalism Award.

kappes-philip-iba.jpg Kappes
dickson-brent-bw.jpg Dickson

Both will be honored at the upcoming IndyBar Professionalism Luncheon to be held Tuesday, Sept. 30 from noon to 1 p.m. at the Hyatt Indianapolis. The luncheon will also feature special guest speaker Hon. John D. Tinder of the United States Court of Appeals, 7th Circuit. Registration for the luncheon can be found at

Chief Justice Brent Dickson was appointed to the Indiana Supreme Court in 1986 after 17 years as a general practice lawyer in Lafayette, Indiana. He has served as Chief Justice of Indiana since May 15, 2012. He will step down as Chief Justice on September 1 and will continue his role on the court as an associate justice. His nomination notes, “As Chief Justice, Justice Dickson has made a commitment to fostering civility in the profession. He leads by example as he always treats other – judges, lawyers and litigants – with respect and dignity. He embodies old-fashioned, but never outdated, gentility.”

Chief Justice Dickson has been a member of the IndyBar since 1968. In addition to his service to IndyBar, he has been appointed as a member of the Judicial Conference of the United States Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure and serves on the Board of Directors of the Conference of Chief Justices. Chief Justice Dickson is the founder of the Judicial Family Institute and co-founder of the Sagamore Chapter of the American Inns of Court in Indianapolis. He has served as an adjunct professor at Indiana University Maurer School of law and Robert H. McKinney School of Law. Chief Justice Dickson and his wife, Jan Aikman Dickson, have three adult sons and nine grandchildren.

Philip “Skip” Kappes was selected to receive the 2014 Professionalism Award. Kappes has been practicing law for 62 years and is a founding director of Lewis & Kappes. He has the second-longest active law license in the state. His nomination notes, “He is, at his core, a genuine and caring person. He has taken that personality and made his mark on this community and the legal profession. There is no one better suited to exemplify that you can reach the heights of your profession and keep respect for your fellow man intact.”

Kappes is a past president of the Indianapolis Bar Association, having served in 1970. In addition to his service to the legal community, Kappes has served as a past president of both the Children’s Museum Board of Trustees and the Crossroad Council Boy Scouts of America. He is currently the chairman of the Scottish Rite Foundation of Indianapolis. Kappes is a Trust Fund Trustee of Crossroad Council Boy Scouts of America and past trustee of Butler University. He is also a past chairman of the board of Fairbanks Hospital.

Kappes graduated from Butler University in 1945 and received his J.D. from University of Michigan in 1948. He has been a member of the IndyBar since 1948.•


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  1. Great observation Smith. By my lights, speaking personally, they already have. They counted my religious perspective in a pro-life context as a symptom of mental illness and then violated all semblance of due process to banish me for life from the Indiana bar. The headline reveals the truth of the Hoosier elite's animus. Details here: Denied 2016 petition for cert (this time around): (“2016Pet”) Amicus brief 2016: (“2016Amici”) As many may recall, I was banned for five years for failing to "repent" of my religious views on life and the law when a bar examiner demanded it of me, resulting in a time out to reconsider my "clinging." The time out did not work, so now I am banned for life. Here is the five year time out order: Denied 2010 petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): (“2010Pet”) Read this quickly if you are going to read it, the elites will likely demand it be pulled down or pile comments on to bury it. (As they have buried me.)

  2. if the proabortion zealots and intolerant secularist anti-religious bigots keep on shutting down every hint of religious observance in american society, or attacking every ounce of respect that the state may have left for it, they may just break off their teeth.

  3. "drug dealers and traffickers need to be locked up". "we cannot afford just to continue to build prisons". "drug abuse is strangling many families and communities". "establishing more treatment and prevention programs will also be priorities". Seems to be what politicians have been saying for at least three decades now. If these are the most original thoughts these two have on the issues of drug trafficking and drug abuse, then we're no closer to solving the problem than we were back in the 90s when crack cocaine was the epidemic. We really need to begin demanding more original thought from those we elect to office. We also need to begin to accept that each of us is part of the solution to a problem that government cannot solve.

  4. What is with the bias exclusion of the only candidate that made sense, Rex Bell? The Democrat and Republican Party have created this problem, why on earth would anyone believe they are able to fix it without pushing government into matters it doesn't belong?

  5. This is what happens when daddy hands over a business to his moron son and thinks that everything will be ok. this bankruptcy is nothing more than Gary pulling the strings to never pay the creditors that he and his son have ripped off. they are scum and they know it.