Three Mercer Law School alumni were recognized at the 16th Annual Justice Robert Benham Awards for Community Service, presented by the Georgia State Bar on Feb. 17. Lieutenant Colonel John Randall Hicks (’99) and Nancy Terrill (’78) were recognized for their judicial districts, and John S. Lewis (’68) was one of three individuals to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award.
The Benham Awards for Community Service are co-sponsored by the State Bar of Georgia and the Chief Justice’s Commission on Professionalism. The awards are among the highest recognition given by the two organizations. Since 1998, the awards have been presented to honor lawyers and judges in Georgia who have made significant contributions to their communities and demonstrate the positive contributions of members of the bar beyond their legal or official work. The Lifetime Achievement Award is reserved for a lawyer or judge who, in addition to meeting the criteria above, has demonstrated an extraordinarily long and distinguished commitment to volunteer participation in the community throughout his or her legal career.
Lt. Col. Hicks has been a Judge Advocate General in the Georgia Air National Guard since 2004 and also works as a solo practitioner in Valdosta. Before entering the National Guard and private practice, he served as a Judge Advocate General in the Air Force. Along with his military service, Hicks is also a Boy Scout Districts Committee member, a 10-year member of the Easter Seals Board, and a member of the Valdosta Chamber of Commerce. Hicks was a member of the Mercer Law Review and Christian Legal Society during his time in law school and graduated cum laude.
Terrill most recently was the continuing legal education coordinator at Mercer Law School from 2002 until last fall. She previously served as an assistant dean and adjunct instructor. She is a member of the State Bar of Georgia, the Macon Bar Association, the Macon-Bibb Civil Service Board and the Georgia Legal Services Program, where she has been a member of the Statewide Board of Directors since 2000. She has been involved in numerous political campaigns and served in many civic organizations including Democratic Women of Bibb County.
Lewis has been a member of the State Bar of Georgia for nearly 45 years and is now semi-retired after working in private law practice and owning John S. Lewis Property Managements. He is credited with large revitalization projects throughout downtown Cartersville, which have brought many jobs and residents to the area. For his revitalization and preservation efforts, Lewis has been awarded the Etowah Valley Historical Society Award, Cartersville Chairman’s Mentoring Award and the Key to the City of Cartersville from its mayor, among other honors. In addition to his work in improving the community, Lewis is a member of the Lions Club, chairman of the Bartow County Heart Fund, and a supporter of the Pumphouse Players and Chamber of Commerce.