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LEADERSHIP SPOTLIGHT – SARAH GOTTLIEB (PRESIDENT’S AWARD 2020)

By: Lauren Pilkington-Rich (Immediate Past President of TBCFBA)

The TBCFBA’s 2020 President’s Award Recipient was Sarah Gottlieb.  Sarah received this award virtually during the TBCFBA’s Annual Meeting in December 2020.  The President’s Award is an annual award chosen by the Chapter’s President and reserved for a member of the Chapter who has exceeded expectations and gone over and above in contributing to the Chapter and its mission.  2020 was Sarah’s first year on the TBCFBA’s Board of Directors, but she was involved in various Chapter committees and initiatives for several years.  Sarah served on the Board as the Chapter’s Co-Liaison of the Law Student Division and Co-Chair of the Staying in the Game Program.

Not only was Sarah extremely successful in both roles, but also when all of the Chapter’s events turned virtual due to the ongoing pandemic, Sarah stepped up to assist and organize several webinars.  Sarah moderated a Judicial Panel for the Young Lawyers Division’s annual Federal Practice Seminar and participated in the Chapter’s annual membership event featuring Judge Honeywell and Judge Moe in coordination with Stetson University College of Law.  The virtual Staying in the Game Program was a two-part series that attracted record attendance, and Sarah was integral in securing Hilarie Bass, president and founder of the Bass Institute for Diversity and Inclusion, as the keynote speaker and a stellar panel for a candid discussion on resilient leadership.  Sarah also helped form the Chapter’s partnership with the Diversity Access Pipeline.  A colleague of Sarah once referred to her as a “secret ninja.”  And, that’s exactly what she is – very unassuming, but so competent, composed, dedicated, committed, and impressive.  She exudes professionalism, is a pleasure to work with, and truly has the mission of the FBA in mind.  The TBCFBA is fortunate to have Sarah as an invaluable Board member and as this year’s Co-Chair of the Young Lawyers Division and Co-Liaison for the Law Student Division.  We are looking forward to what she has in store for the TBCFBA in the coming years.  Congratulations, Sarah!

In her spare time, Sarah is an associate at Freeborn & Peters in the Litigation Practice Group.  Prior to joining Freeborn, Sarah served as a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Charlene Edwards Honeywell in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.  She was also previously an Associate at Phelps Dunbar LLP.

Sarah graduated cum laude from Stetson University College of Law, where she participated in the Honors Program, served as a Notes and Comments Editor for Stetson Law Review, and served as a legal research assistant to a professor. Sarah’s graduation honors include the Williams F. Blews Award for exemplary pro bono service. While earning her law degree, Sarah also served as a Judicial Intern for the Honorable Elizabeth Kovachevich and the Honorable Anthony Porcelli of the Middle District of Florida. In addition, Sarah gained experience as a Certified Legal Intern with the City of St. Petersburg and as a Law Clerk for a boutique land use and local government law firm. Before attending law school and becoming a lawyer, Sarah worked as a journalist.

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