State Bar seeks entries for 2014 Texas Gavel journalism awards

The State Bar of Texas is now accepting entries for the 2014 Texas Gavel Awards, which recognize excellence in legal reporting during the 2013 calendar year.

Entries will be accepted until 5 p.m. April 1 in the print, broadcast, and online categories. There is no entry fee.

Awards will be presented Sept. 12 in Austin in conjunction with the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas annual conference.

Read the news release here.

Download the entry form here.


2013 Gavel Award winners recognized at luncheon

The State Bar of Texas honored winners of the 2013 Texas Gavel Awards on Friday during the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas’s annual conference in Austin. 

The winners are:

Craig Malisow of the Houston Press for “Blood Money,” in the print-major metro category. “Blood Money” is an in-depth look at the case of more than 200 soldiers who sued a military contractor for their exposure to toxic chemicals in Iraq.

Emma Perez-Treviño of the Valley Morning Star for “Corruption,” in the print-nonmetro category. “Corruption” is a series of reports documenting a web of connections, indictments, and convictions in the Cameron County judiciary and legal system.

Brandi Grissom, Justin Dehn, and Ryan Murphy of The Texas Tribune for “Errors in Judgment,” in the online-only category. In “Errors in Judgment,” the Tribune reviewed court records in each of the more than 80 overturned Texas convictions between 1989 and 2011 and found that nearly a quarter of the cases involved prosecutorial error that contributed to the wrong outcome.

The Texas Gavel Awards are sponsored each year by the State Bar of Texas Public Affairs Committee and judged by out-of-state journalists and editors, legal reporting experts, attorneys with journalism backgrounds, and members of academia. Journalists play an important role in educating the public about the legal system, and the Texas Gavel Awards honor those efforts.

To read the winning stories and learn more about the winners, visit

Pictured, from left, are State Bar of Texas Board of Directors chair Cindy Tisdale, Perez-Treviño, Malisow, Dehn, and Rudy England, the chair of the State Bar of Texas Public Affairs Committee.