Michael Podgurski, a third-year student at UIC John Marshall Law School in Chicago, has been awarded the C.B. King Award from the National Lawyers Guild.
The C.B. King Award is given in honor of Chevene Bowers King, who was one of the country’s most prominent and courageous civil rights lawyers. For more than thirty years, King practiced law in Albany, Georgia, where he was a major figure in the civil rights movement. He was well-known for his courage, courtroom eloquence, and legal skills in the face of tremendous adversity, including violent opposition during the civil rights movement in Georgia.
Each year, the National Lawyers Guild selects one student for this honor. Podgurski, who currently serves as co-president of the UIC John Marshall chapter of the National Lawyers Guild and volunteers as a legal observer coordinator for the National Lawyers Guild’s Chicago chapter, was selected for the award based on his relentless dedication to community work.
Before entering law school, Podgurski led “Know Your Rights” workshops as a member of First Defense Legal Aid’s “Street Law Corps.” During law school, he has interned with the Hamilton Law Office and Uptown People’s Law Center.
The National Lawyers Guild is the nation’s oldest and largest progressive bar association and was the first in the U.S. to be racially integrated. Its mission is to use law for the people, uniting lawyers, law students, legal workers and jailhouse lawyers to function as an effective force in the service of the people by valuing human rights and the rights of ecosystems over property interests.