Missouri Lawyers Media has chosen Judge Lisa White Hardwick of the Missouri Court of Appeals Western District as its 2022 Woman of the Year.
Hardwick, who was named to the Western District in 2001, is the longest serving current member of the Kansas City-based appellate court.
Prior to joining the appellate bench, Hardwick was a trial judge in Jackson County for about a year and a half. She previously practiced law with the law firm of Shook, Hardy & Bacon for 15 years and was an elected member of the Jackson County Legislature from 1993 to 2000. She earned her law degree from Harvard in 1985.
Hardwick, who was the first Black woman appointed to any of the Court of Appeals’ three districts and is currently the only Black judge on the Western District, has served as chair of the Missouri Commission on Racial and Ethnic Fairness since 2015. She also is the former chair of the Supreme Court’s Appellate Practice Committee and led the Appellate Apportionment Commission that drew district maps for the Missouri House and Senate following the 2010 census.
Hardwick leads this year’s list of 51 honorees, which comprises judges, in-house counsel, legal scholars and private practitioners from around the state, as well as outstanding students at Missouri law schools.
The 24th annual Women’s Justice Awards event is set for May 12 at the Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis. Winners also will be profiled in a special section of Missouri Lawyers Weekly.
Since 1999, the Women’s Justice Awards have celebrated extraordinary women lawyers, law students, rising stars, public officials and others in recognition of the standards of professional excellence they’ve set for their peers. For information on the event or to purchase tickets, click here.
The 2022 honorees are:
Woman of the Year
This woman truly stands out in making an extraordinary difference to improve the quality of justice or exemplify the highest ideals of the legal profession.
These women serve as general or in-house counsel, advising businesses on complex legal matters.
General Practitioner Award
These are the women who, as attorneys, do it all. They handle multiple practice areas with skill.
Innovation & Technology Award
These women advise companies, startups and entrepreneurs with legal issues regarding intellectual property, technology and other aspects of their business.
Leaders of Tomorrow Award
These law students demonstrate leadership, professionalism and a passion for making a difference in the justice system or legal profession.
Litigation Practitioner Award
These litigators have made their careers in the courtroom — criminal or civil, representing plaintiff or defense.
Pro Bono Award
These awards honor the women attorneys who have contributed significant effort and time to pro bono work.
Public Service Award
These women work on behalf of a nonprofit organization, government agency or the judiciary; or have made their mark in education.
Transactional Practitioner Award
These women counsel companies, individuals and organizations on the legal issues generated by their business dealings or financial matters.