Award presented to family of Ross Alderman at capitol ceremony
NASHVILLE, Jan. 17, 2009 — Ross Alderman was honored as the state’s top public service attorney by the Tennessee Bar Association at its annual public service luncheon today at the state capitol. Held each year as part of the association’s Leadership Conference, the luncheon featured award winners in several categories as well as a keynote address by Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice Janice Holder.
Alderman, who served as Davidson County public defender before being killed in a tragic accident last summer, was presented with the Ashley T. Wiltshire Public Service Attorney of the Year Award for decades of work on behalf the indigent – first as Davidson County’s deputy public defender and then as public defender, a position he held for nine years. Prior to those posts, Alderman was an assistant U.S. attorney and assistant federal public defender. He earned his law degree in 1976 from the University of Tennessee College of Law. The award was accepted by Alderman’s widow and Tennessee Court of Appeals Judge Patricia J. Cottrell.
The Ashley T. Wiltshire Public Service Attorney of the Year Award is given annually to an attorney who has committed to a career in public service, and over the course of that career, has gone above and beyond the call of duty in representing indigent clients. The award is named for Ashley Wiltshire, the former executive director of the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands, who faithfully served the agency in various roles for 37 years.