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Human Rights Activist Shannon Sedgwick Davis Named 2011 Baylor Young Lawyer of the Year

July 8, 2011

Shannon Sedgwick Davis, JD '00, has been named the recipient of the 2011 Baylor Young Lawyer of the Year award. Sedgwick Davis is CEO of the Bridgeway Foundation, the charitable-giving arm of Bridgeway Capital Management, Inc. An attorney, Sedgwick Davis is a passionate advocate for social justice and international human rights. She is a well-known strategist engaged in promoting peace and ending human atrocities across our globe.

The Young Lawyer of the Year award was presented by Baylor Law Dean Brad Toben and Berkley Scroggins, assistant director of alumni relations, during the annual State Bar of Texas Alumni Reception in San Antonio on June 23. Sedgwick Davis was out of the country so the award was accepted by her son. Her husband, children, parents and in-laws also were in attendance.

"Baylor Law School is honored to recognize Shannon Sedgwick Davis as the 2011 Baylor Young Lawyer of the Year. She is an alumna who has used her Baylor law degree to advocate for justice and human rights and impact the lives of many. We are proud of her," Scroggins said.

Since her graduation from Baylor Law School in 2000, Sedgwick Davis has been committed to pursuing justice and human rights around the world. She previously served as vice-president of Geneva Global, an organization that invests in Third World communities, and as director of public affairs at International Justice Mission, a human-rights organization in Washington, D.C., that focuses on ending slavery, forced prostitution and illegal land seizures in the developing world. She also conducted high-level briefings for White House staff, members of Congress and human rights activists, including Robert Redford and Bono. Sedgwick Davis' work was featured in the Emmy award-winning Dateline segment, "Children for Sale."

Sedgwick Davis spends a significant amount of time traveling abroad working to free children from brothels and slavery. She is on the advisory board for The Elders, a collective group of world leaders assembled to contribute their wisdom, independent leadership and integrity to tackling some of the world's toughest problems. Members of The Elders include Nelson Mandela, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, President Jimmy Carter and Kofi Annan, among others. She is currently a board member of several organizations within the U.S. and abroad, including Humanity United, Tom's Shoes and Ben Affleck's Eastern Congo Initiative.

"Compassion is a character trait that aptly describes Shannon," Scroggins said. "She has looked into the eyes of suffering mothers who have lost their children as a result of wars, genocide, slavery and prostitution. She continues to advocate for these mothers and others around the world who suffer human rights abuses, and for those who have no voice."

The Baylor Young Lawyer of the Year Award is given annually to an outstanding alumnus/a who has brought honor and distinction to the Law School and to the legal profession. The recipient must not reach age 41 before Jan. 1 of the award year. Recipients are selected based upon the following criteria:

•The nominee's legal ability and achievements as a lawyer;

•The nominee's contributions to the legal profession;

•The nominee's standing in the profession;

•The nominee's Christian character;

•The nominee's civic, religious and other attainments; and

•The nominee's active interest in Baylor Law School.

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