Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Jennifer Bailey, who has led a statewide task force on residential mortgage foreclosures, received a community service award Friday from the Daily Business Review.

Bailey was recognized in Miami at the annual installation dinner of the Dade County Bar Association. The honor, the DBR Sookie Williams Community Service Award, recognizes exemplary service to the legal community of Miami-Dade County. Williams, a longtime executive at the DBR, is the newspaper’s vice president of Miami legal and court relations.

DBR publisher Chris Mobley noted that judge Bailey has spent more than year working to ease “the crushing overload of foreclosure cases clogging the courts.” In doing so, he said, the 18-year judge has sought to hold litigants accountable for their actions in court. Most recently, the judge took the extraordinary measure of canceling a homeowner’s $207,000 mortgage debt when a lender ignored her order to post a bond.

The judge has presided in the criminal, family and general jurisdiction divisions, served as administrative judge of the latter division and headed the young lawyers sections of both the bar association and of The Florida Bar’s Board Of Governors.

The bar association, now in its 94th year, installed Steven W. Davis of Boies Schiller & Flexner as its president. He succeeded Steven P. Befera of the Befera Law Firm. Stephanie L. Carman of Hogan Lovells was installed as president of the young lawyers section. The association also installed its new board of directors.

The association’s David W. Dyer Professionalism Award went to pioneering community leader H.T. Smith. The first African-American to receive the award, he was Miami-Dade County’s first assistant public defender and first African-American assistant county attorney. The Associated said Smith worked tirelessly as a leader in the legal community to promote public confidence in the legal profession through community based initiatives and projects undertaken by organizations under his leadership. Dyer, who died in 1998, served as a federal district judge in Miami after his appointment by President John F. Kennedy, and as a federal appeals court judge appointed by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The judge served on the 5th and 11th circuits.

The Sabadell United Community Service Award went to Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Gill S. Freeman. She was cited for her efforts to save the Miami-Dade County law library when the state withdrew funding for the facility. The bank, which serves South Florida, is part of Banco Sabadell of Spain.

Source: Daily Business Review