Housing Justice Network Awards

David B. Bryson Memorial Award

David B. Bryson worked for NHLP for nearly 25 years, and over the course of his career, dedicated his exceptional talents to improving the housing conditions of extremely low-income people. He brought major housing impact cases and assisted others in bringing such cases. He wrote extensively, provided thorough and thoughtful advice, and fought for legislation to preserve and expand the rights of federally assisted residents. His career was full of extraordinary accomplishments and service to co-workers, colleagues, and allies.

The Bryson Award honors an individual who carries out the principles exemplified by David Bryson and carries on his legacy of stalwart and selfless pursuit of housing justice. The recipient of the Bryson Memorial Award will have demonstrated exemplary commitment to solving the housing problems of extremely low-income people. They will have worked in the field for at least 20 years. In addition, the Bryson Memorial Award winner will have been successful in a variety of forums and is known for unwavering support to colleagues and others who work in the legal services and housing advocacy communities.

★ 2000 – Bill Wilen of the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law

★ 2002 – Mac McCreight of Greater Boston Legal Services

★ 2004 – Barbara Sard of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

★ 2006 – Fred Fuchs of Texas RioGrande Legal Aid

★ 2008 – Judith Liben of Mass. Law Reform Institute

★ 2010 – Mike Hanley of Empire Justice Center

★ 2011 – George Gould of Community Legal Services

★ 2013 – Ilene Jacobs of California Rural Legal Assistance

★ 2015 – Florence Wagman Roisman of Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law

★ 2017 – Richard Tenenbaum of Connecticut Legal Services

★ 2019 – Mike Rawson of the Public Interest Law Project

★ 2022 – Gregory Countess of Maryland Legal Aid

The Bill Powers Housing Justice Award

The Bill Powers Housing Justice Award recognizes a new and impressive talent in the field of affordable housing and low-income housing rights. The award is also intended to underscore the importance of uniting direct service work with local, state or federal policy advocacy. The award is given to an energetic and unstoppable activist–not necessarily an attorney–who is fearlessly and successfully tackling the systemic and often hostile obstacles that stand in the way of safe, decent and affordable housing for low-income and marginalized people. The advocate’s work encompasses activities that benefit individual residents, resident organizations, or people in need of housing.

Formerly named the Housing Justice Award, we renamed it the Bill Powers Housing Justice Award in 2022 to honor his memory. The award honors an individual who carries out the principles exemplified by Bill Powers and his legacy of supporting tenants’ rights.  They have worked in the field for 15 or fewer years, and have achieved one or more of the following:

(1) advanced the legal rights of low-income renters or homeowners
(2) strengthened state or federal low-income housing programs
(3) improved the law regarding such rights or programs
(4) made other significant contributions to the goals of the Housing Justice Network

★ 2004 – Marc Jolin of the Oregon Law Center

★ 2006 – Kate Walz, of the Sargent Shriver Poverty Law Center and Julie Becker, of Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia

★ 2008 – Sara Shortt of Housing Rights Committee of San Francisco and Gavin Thornton of Columbia Legal Services (formerly Legal Aid Society of Hawaii and Lawyers for Equal Justice)

★ 2010 – Anne Smetak of the Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless

★ 2011 – C. Matthew Hill of Public Justice Center

★ 2013 – Shahrzad Emami of Legal Services of Greater Miami

★ 2015 – Jeffrey M. Hearne of Legal Services of Greater Miami

★ 2017 – Rasheedah Phillips of Community Legal Services of Philadelphia

★ 2017 – Beth Harrison of Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia

★ 2019 – Xochitl Maykovich of Washington Community Action Network

★ 2022 – Hannah Adams of Southeast Louisiana Legal Services