Sunday, October 4, 2020

Submit Your Winning "Best Brief" for the 2021 Scribes Brief-Writing Award

Did a moot court team at your school win a Best Brief Award last year?

Here's a reminder that Scribes--The American Society of Legal Writers--is accepting submissions for the 2021 Brief-Writing Award. The deadline for submitting briefs is October 19, 2020.

In 1996, Scribes launched a Brief-Writing Award to recognize and celebrate excellent student-written briefs. Scribes believes that legal writing is of paramount importance to law students and their careers, and it hopes to encourage good legal writing by recognizing its finest examples.

The Scribes Brief-Writing Award for 2021 considers submissions of moot-court briefs that have won first place in a national or regional moot-court competition during the 2019-2020 academic year (September 2019 to August 2020). The award committee then selects the best briefs from all of the winning briefs submitted.

In 2020, the first-place winning brief was authored by students Allyson E. Lynch, Paul T. Madden, and Sarah L. Martin of Belmont University College of Law. The second- and third-place brief awards were won by students at South Texas College of Law. The students who won the the second-place award were Meredith J. Clark, David V. Dorris, and Sandra M. Guillen. South Texas College of Law. The winners of the third-place award were William N. Haacker, John Wooldridge, and Greg A. Urbach.

In 2019, the first-place winners were Caitlin Messinger and Keriann Smith of the Florida State University College of Law in Tallahassee. Their award was presented in April during a Scribes CLE and Award Ceremony at the Law Library of Congress in Washington D.C. (The 2019 award ceremony also included the presentation of the Lifetime-Achievement Award to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, so it was quite a day for those students!) The second-place winners for 2019 were Cesar Escalante and Jonathan Peña of the South Texas College of Law in Houston, Texas. Two schools tied for third place: Jacob Cunningham, Jessica Finley, and Sara Kuebel won from the Louisiana State University Paul M. Herbert Law Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Gabriella Gallego and Alyxandra N. Vernon won from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco, California.

To submit a brief that won a national or regional moot court competition during the 2019-20 academic year, email an electronic pdf of the winning brief to The subject line of the email should indicate that it is a Scribes brief nomination from "____" Law School (the student's law school, not the school that hosted the moot court competition). The body of the email should set forth the name of the competition, the names of the students who wrote the brief and their school, and the name of the faculty coach or advisor, if any. The pdf (or Word) copy of the winning brief cannot include any information that identifies the student authors or their school. Please check the cover page, signature pages, and headers and footers.

Please contact Scribes Executive Director Philip Johnson at if you have any questions about submitting a brief for the competition (or if you need an extra day or two to submit your school's winning briefs).

Mark E. Wojcik, President, Scribes--The American Society of Legal Writers

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