News & Events


Jan 20, 2021

The St. Louis County Bar Association has selected attorney Sarah Shelledy Pleban as the recipient of the 2021 Dudley C. Dunlop Distinguished Service Award and attorney Brandon Lamar Jackson as the recipient of the 2021 Roy F. Essen Memorial Award for Outstanding Work as a Young Lawyer.

Ms. Pleban has concentrated in the family law arena, primarily as a guardian ad litem, since entering into private practice. She has been a sole practitioner in St. Louis County since 1989.  Sarah’s first job as a lawyer was at the St. Louis County Public Defender’s Office where she eventually was the Chief Trial Attorney. She graduated from Quincy University and St. Louis University School of Law. 

Ms. Pleban has been on the annual Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers list since 2012.  She is AV Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.  She has spoken at many continuing legal education seminars put on by the Missouri Bar, the St. Louis County Bar Association, the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis, The Bench and Bar Conference, and the annual Missouri Bar Conference.  In 2014, she received The Missouri Lawyer’s Association Women’s Justice Award for Public Service Practitioner. 

Ms. Pleban has been on the Board of Trustees for Quincy University, Board of Directors for Affton School District, St. Michael the Archangel School Board, and on several boards including The Epilepsy Foundation, Heritage House, Lawyers for Kids and St. Franciscan Charities of the Sacred Heart Province.  She was a volunteer tutor at Loyola Academy in the City of St. Louis from 2012 – 2019.  Since 2017, she has spent many hours volunteering for St. Francis Community Services, The Migrant & Immigrant Community Action Project (The M.I.C.A. Project) and the Inter-Faith Committee on Latin America in their Power of Attorney Workshops, Pro-Se Asylum Workshops and Legal Clinic nights.  She has also volunteered her services for Catholic Legal Assistance Ministry and the M.I.C.A. Project both as Guardian Ad Litem and attorney for parents seeking paternity judgments in cases involving immigrants.  She is a member of The Shrewsbury Anti-Racism Collective. 

Brandon Lamar Jackson is an Associate at Brown & Crouppen Law Firm where his practice is devoted solely to protecting the rights of injured victims.  He received his undergraduate education at Morehouse College where he was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate, and his law degree from the University of Illinois at Champaign Urbana, where he was awarded the pro bono notation, participated in the community development law clinic, and won Best Orator at the Frederick Douglass Moot Court competition. 

Mr. Jackson is a member of several community organizations including the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis where he serves as chair-elect of the Minorities in the Legal Profession (MILP) Committee, the Mound City Bar Association where he serves as chair of Young Lawyers Division and a board member of Arch City Defenders, a holistic legal advocacy organization that combats the criminalization of poverty and state violence, especially in communities of color.  He was named an Up & Coming Lawyer in 2019 by Missouri Lawyers Weekly.

The Dudley C. Dunlop Distinguished Service Award is an honor conferred on an attorney who has provided distinguished and unselfish service to the organized bar and the community.  The recipient must also show constant devotion to the highest principles and practices of the legal profession and symbolize the highest standards of integrity, honor and unselfish service.

The Roy F. Essen Memorial Award for Outstanding Work as a Young Lawyer is an honor conferred on an attorney in recognition of excellence and distinguished work as a lawyer, distinguished service to the organized bar, and outstanding service to the community. The recipient must be under the age of 40 years.

The St. Louis County Bar Association, founded in 1931, is a 600 plus member, non-profit professional organization for attorneys and judges. It provides professional development, education and service programs for the legal community and supports the St. Louis County judiciary and its staff. The current president is Matthew A. Radefeld of Frank, Juengel & Radefeld.  The president-elect is Lisa G. Moore of Paule, Camazine & Blumenthal, P.C. Ms. Moore will present these two awards at a reception that will be scheduled later this year. The awards were to have been presented at a dinner reception on February 6, 2021 which was cancelled due to Covid-19.

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