BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., Oct. 5, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Dwight D. Opperman Foundation will be presenting the 31st Annual Edward J. Devitt Distinguished Service to Justice Award to Judge Edward Leavy of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit on November 13, 2015, at the Supreme Court of the United States.
U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas was the chair of this year's selection panel and was assisted by Senior Judge Joel F. Dubina of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, and by Chief Judge Lisa Godbey Wood of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia.
Justice Thomas stated, "On behalf of my colleagues on the selection committee, I am honored to announce the selection of Judge Edward Leavy as the recipient of the 31st Annual Edward J. Devitt Distinguished Service to Justice Award. Judge Leavy, during almost six decades as a judge, of which more than half have been as a federal district and court of appeals judge, has made countless and invaluable contributions to the federal judiciary and our justice system. Judge Leavy is truly an outstanding man who is deeply respected and admired by those who know him. He brings great honor and prestige to the tradition of this Award."
Judge Leavy said, "I am overwhelmed and humbled by the kind and generous support of those who supported my nomination. It is a source of great pride to be identified with the distinguished recipients of this award."
Dwight D. Opperman, former president and chairman of West Publishing Company, created the Devitt Award 34 years ago to bestow a high honor to an Article III federal judge for distinguished and exceptional service. He joined forces with then Chief Justice Warren Burger, and chose to name the award after his esteemed friend, Judge Edward J. Devitt, who epitomized the highest standard of the federal bench. The Devitt is the longest running and most prestigious award to be bestowed upon an Article III federal judge.
Since its inception, there has only been one break with tradition when a two-year pause was taken after Mr. Opperman passed away in 2013. However, the Dwight D. Opperman Foundation chairman, Julie Chrystyn Opperman, has resumed the tradition and the award will be presented annually indefinitely.
Mrs. Opperman stated, "I am honored to have been entrusted by Dwight to continue his legacy in this and other philanthropic matters. I am deeply moved and grateful to all the members of the Supreme Court of the United States, especially Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., Justice Anthony M. Kennedy and Justice Clarence Thomas, who encouraged me to continue with the presentation of the Devitt Award. It has been an enriching experience to be a part of this distinguished and dedicated judicial community."
SOURCE Dwight D. Opperman Foundation