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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 indybar.org/events.

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 He embodies old-fashioned, but never outdated, gentility.”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. People have heard of Magna Carta, and not the Provisions of Oxford & Westminster. Not that anybody really cares. Today, it might be considered ethnic or racial bias to talk about the "Anglo Saxon common law." I don't even see the word English in the blurb above. Anyhow speaking of Edward I-- he was famously intolerant of diversity himself viz the Edict of Expulsion 1290. So all he did too like making parliament a permanent institution-- that all must be discredited. 100 years from now such commemorations will be in the dustbin of history.

  2. Oops, I meant discipline, not disciple. Interesting that those words share such a close relationship. We attorneys are to be disciples of the law, being disciplined to serve the law and its source, the constitutions. Do that, and the goals of Magna Carta are advanced. Do that not and Magna Carta is usurped. Do that not and you should be disciplined. Do that and you should be counted a good disciple. My experiences, once again, do not reveal a process that is adhering to the due process ideals of Magna Carta. Just the opposite, in fact. Braveheart's dying rebel (for a great cause) yell comes to mind.

  3. It is not a sign of the times that many Ind licensed attorneys (I am not) would fear writing what I wrote below, even if they had experiences to back it up. Let's take a minute to thank God for the brave Baron's who risked death by torture to tell the government that it was in the wrong. Today is a career ruination that whistleblowers risk. That is often brought on by denial of licenses or disciple for those who dare speak truth to power. Magna Carta says truth rules power, power too often claims that truth matters not, only Power. Fight such power for the good of our constitutional republics. If we lose them we have only bureaucratic tyranny to pass onto our children. Government attorneys, of all lawyers, should best realize this and work to see our patrimony preserved. I am now a government attorney (once again) in Kansas, and respecting the rule of law is my passion, first and foremost.

  4. I have dealt with more than a few I-465 moat-protected government attorneys and even judges who just cannot seem to wrap their heads around the core of this 800 year old document. I guess monarchial privileges and powers corrupt still ..... from an academic website on this fantastic "treaty" between the King and the people ... "Enduring Principles of Liberty Magna Carta was written by a group of 13th-century barons to protect their rights and property against a tyrannical king. There are two principles expressed in Magna Carta that resonate to this day: "No freeman shall be taken, imprisoned, disseised, outlawed, banished, or in any way destroyed, nor will We proceed against or prosecute him, except by the lawful judgment of his peers or by the law of the land." "To no one will We sell, to no one will We deny or delay, right or justice." Inspiration for Americans During the American Revolution, Magna Carta served to inspire and justify action in liberty’s defense. The colonists believed they were entitled to the same rights as Englishmen, rights guaranteed in Magna Carta. They embedded those rights into the laws of their states and later into the Constitution and Bill of Rights. The Fifth Amendment to the Constitution ("no person shall . . . be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.") is a direct descendent of Magna Carta's guarantee of proceedings according to the "law of the land." http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/featured_documents/magna_carta/

  5. I'm not sure what's more depressing: the fact that people would pay $35,000 per year to attend an unaccredited law school, or the fact that the same people "are hanging in there and willing to follow the dean’s lead in going forward" after the same school fails to gain accreditation, rendering their $70,000 and counting education worthless. Maybe it's a good thing these people can't sit for the bar.

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