The Litigation Section of the North Carolina Bar Association presented Womble Carlyle attorney Bill Womble, Jr. with the Section’s top honor, its Advocate’s Award for 2016, at an event in Greensboro on April 22. 

L. Cooper Harrell, Chair of the NCBA Litigation Section, said, “The Advocate’s Award was established to recognize litigators who have shown great skill as a lawyer, while maintaining the highest ethical standards, demonstrating a true commitment of service to clients, and serving as an example of how to effectively balance outstanding professional performance with life’s many other important endeavors. Winners of the Award must be held in the highest regard by both bench and bar, demonstrate a respect for and love of the law, and be dedicated to their communities with a track record of pro bono or volunteer service. The Litigation Section could not be more pleased to confer the Advocate’s Award on Bill Womble, Jr.; he sets a wonderful example to all lawyers, young and not-so-young, of how to represent clients with excellence, while also tirelessly serving the communities in which he lives and works.”

Womble is a lawyer with more than 40 years of high-stakes trial and appellate experience in federal and state courts across North Carolina and in other jurisdictions. He is a fellow in the prestigious American College of Trial Lawyers and an Advocate of the American Board of Trial Advocates. He is a permanent member of the U. S. Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference and of the Board of Visitors of the Duke University School of Law. He chairs the North Carolina Bar Association’s Committee on Judicial Independence, and has consistently accepted leadership roles in the Bar Association’s work ranging from Legal Aid to practical skills training to bench/bar relationships and professionalism. He was one of the founders of the Council on Drug Abuse (now Insight Human Services) and the national Propane Gas Defense Association, and a charter member and past president of the N.C. Association of Defense Attorneys. He is an active member of the national Product Liability Advisory Council. With Erna Womble, he co-chaired The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County’s 2008 annual fund drive which initiated fund-raising for the Rhodes Center for the Arts. He served as a Navy Lieutenant during the Vietnam War. 

On February 11, 2016, Bill Womble, Jr. was presented The Order of the Long Leaf Pine by North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory, which is one of the highest honors a governor of North Carolina can bestow and is awarded to individuals who provide “exemplary service” to the State.

Womble expressed great thanks to the NCBA Litigation Section, and a deep appreciation for the professional quality, mutual respect and friendship of attorneys across North Carolina, whether on the same side of a case or adverse; and for the judges and the courthouse staff members who maintain an abiding respect for our state and federal courts, despite their being over worked and under paid. Womble also expressed thanks for the attorneys and staff of Womble Carlyle, saying, “I am fortunate to be in a law firm which values pro bono and community service, as well as excellent service to clients, the legal profession, our State and country.” 

As part of the award, the North Carolina Bar Association Litigation Section is making a financial contribution to two non-profit organizations of Bill Womble, Jr.’s choice: Legal Aid of North Carolina, Inc. and the Forsyth Humane Society.