Missouri lawyers to be recognized during MOLAP conference
The Missouri Bar Lawyers’ Assistance Program has announced the recipients of its annual James T. Britt, Warren Welliver, and Dorothy Kaiser awards. The winners will be recognized at the 22nd Annual Missouri Lawyers’ Assistance Conference on Friday, Nov. 4.
Brent Cantor was chosen to receive the James T. Britt Memorial Award, which is presented to a lawyer in recognition of their pioneering contributions over the years to advance the cause of relief and recovery for Missouri lawyers. Cantor, who practices with Brown & Crouppen in St. Louis, has served as a monitor, hosted support activities, and served at SLU Law Mental Health Day.
“Receiving the James T. Britt Memorial award is an honor that I share with my friends, family, and co-workers and those of us in the MOLAP community,” Cantor said. “While I am grateful, honored, and humbled to be recognized, the most important thing that I want is for everyone to know that the hardest step, being willing to ask for and receive help, is a big step, but if you or someone close to you needs help, please don’t hesitate to contact me or MOLAP. Through acts of loving kindness and caring, we can all make a difference.”
Kansas City lawyer David Lurie was selected to receive the Warren Welliver Award, which is presented to a member who has best exemplified compassion and concern for lawyers in Missouri during the past year. Lurie, a solo practitioner, is a dedicated member of the Lawyers’ Assistance Committee, serving as a peer support volunteer for lawyers starting their careers; members in mid-career crisis; and those who are rebuilding after setbacks. Lurie is known for his strength, inspiration, and compassion.
“Receiving this award is a great honor,” Lurie said. “My life has always been about assisting others, and being able to help fellow lawyers is a privilege.”
Athena Dickson was chosen to receive the Dorothy Kaiser Award in recognition of her contributions to the fields of chemical dependency and recovery, and her dedication to compassionate care for female lawyers in Missouri. Dickson, a Kansas City lawyer, has served as the chair of the Special Committee on Lawyers Living Well. This group spearheaded updates to the model policy for law firms addressing impairment, making it user-friendly for both small and large firms. The group also helped organize no-cost CLEs that drew hundreds of participants to learn about the importance of sleep, as well as suicide prevention and awareness. She helped start the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association’s Well-Being Committee and led the charge to create a well-being summit. Dickson’s work has helped ensure that her employees and opposing counsel can prioritize their health and wellness.
"High workloads and over-commitment have female attorneys exhibiting more risk for hazardous drinking," Dickson said. “I am hopeful that the Committee for Well-Being in the Profession will continue to encourage bar organizations to offer alternatives to alcohol-related events and will continue to push for education for well-being in our profession.”
The Missouri Lawyers' Assistance Program is a professional, confidential counseling program for members of The Missouri Bar, immediate family members who reside with them, and law students. Through a variety of free services, MOLAP helps individuals overcome personal concerns such as substance use, depression, stress, and burnout. To access services anytime, call 1-800-688-7859, or find web resources at MoBar.org/MOLAP.