James A. Walsh
Outstanding Jurist Award

The Board of Governors presents this award to a judge whose career exemplifies the highest standards of judicial conduct for integrity and independence; who is knowledgeable of the law and faithful to it; who is unswayed by partisan interests, public clamor or fear of criticism; who is patient, dignified and courteous to all who appear before him; and who endeavors to improve the administration of justice and public understanding of, and respect for, the role of law in our society.  The award was established in 1989.

2013 RecipientJames Marlar

Gottsfield, Robert

ROBERT L. GOTTSFIELD is a graduate of State University of New York, (Binghamton) (B.A.1956), Cornell Law School, (J.D. 1960), and ASU (Master of Counseling 1981). He clerked for the Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Department, in Albany N. Y. (1960 – 1962) and became a research staff attorney to the Court (1963). He joined the Phoenix law firm of Rawlins, Ellis, Burrus & Kiewit, in 1963, and eventually became a partner specializing in banking, bonds and commercial litigation. He has over 130 legal publications and has been a panelist in over 100 county bar and State Bar CLE seminars. He has previously received a Continuing Legal Education Award from the State Bar (1988). Co-founder of the Phoenix University Club. Co-Founder and Chair, for many years beginning in 1981, of the then Law and Counseling and Dispute Resolution Committee (now a section of the State Bar). He received a Declaration of Appreciation from the Arizona Youth & Government Program of the YMCA for 35 years participation (2007), among numerous other civic activities. He was recently inducted into the Maricopa County Bar Association’s Hall of Fame (2012). He is a retired but called back full-time Superior Court Judge serving in the criminal division, on which court he has served 33 years.


Previous Recipients


The award has been presented to:

1989     Hon. James A. Walsh
1990 Hon. William P. Copple
1991 Hon. James Duke Cameron
1992 Hon. Frank X. Gordon, Jr.
1993 Hon. Alice Truman
1994 Hon. Stanley G. Feldman
1995 Hon. Robert B. Buchanan
1996 Hon. James Moeller
1997 Hon. Jack L. Ogg
1998 Hon. Ronald S. Reinstein
1999 Hon. Elizabeth R. Finn
2000 Hon. William C. Canby, Jr.
2001 Hon. Thomas A. Zlaket
2002 Hon. Edward L. Dawson
2003 Hon. Michael Daly Hawkins
2004 Hon. Mary Murphy Schroeder
Hon. George B. Nielsen, Jr.
2005 Hon. Michael D. Ryan
2006 Hon. Stephen M. McNamee
2007 Hon. C. Kimball Rose (posthumously)
2008 Hon. Barry C. Schneider
2009 Chief Justice Ruth V. McGregor
2010 Hon. Barbara Rodriguez Mundell
2011 Hon. John M. Roll (posthumously)
2012 Hon. James M. Marlar