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Home Awards & Recognition Lifetime Achievement Awards

Lifetime Achievement Awards

  

2015

Paul Lauritzen
Pima County Attorney's Office

Paul Lauritzen received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Iowa in 1976, graduating magna cum laude, and was admitted to the Arizona Bar in 1979.  He was hired by the Pima County Attorney’s Office in 1980, where he has remained, singularly steadfast in his commitment to the protection of the public and the administration of justice in Pima County. Paul is an accomplished and respected prosecutor, with more than 150 felony jury trials under his belt; he is a mentor and a role model for his peers and the newer generation of prosecutors. His contributions to the Pima County Attorney’s Office are immeasurable.

 

 

 

Susan Luder
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Susan Luder has been a prosecutor at the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office for over 19 years. During this time, Susan was initially assigned to a Trial Bureau where she prosecuted defendants indicted for a variety of crimes, then transferred to the Charging Bureau where she honed her skills in charging felony cases and in presenting investigations to the grand jury. In January 2001, Susan was assigned to the Special Crimes Bureau as the AATA grant attorney providing services to the officers on the Task Force, persons involved with AATA programs, and agencies involved with the Bait Vehicle Program. In December 2006, Susan moved to the Gang/Repeat Offender Program Bureau and served as the Assistant Bureau Chief in ROP for four years and handled a number of dangerous felony cases. In February 2012, Susan joined the Appeals Bureau arguing her first case in the Court of Appeals after six months in the bureau. In 2013, Susan volunteered to argue another attorney’s case in the Arizona Supreme Court.

 

Lynn Potts
Mesa City Prosecutor's Office

Lynn Potts started her career in 1985 as a Rule 28(e) intern in the Tucson City Prosecutor’s Office.  She was a Deputy County Assistant for Pinal County before being hired as an assistant prosecutor with the Mesa Prosecutor’s Office, where she has worked for 28 years.  During her career, Lynn helped streamline existing processes, supervised law school interns and prosecutors, taught police, developed manuals, created diversion programs and wrote grant proposals.  Most importantly, Lynn’s career focused on domestic violence and victims’ rights.  She created a Victims’ Rights Advocate Program, prepared a DV office manual, developed a newsletter on DV issues, and presented at DV workshops across the state.  She was a member of numerous local, county and statewide organizations aimed at enhancing the prosecution of domestic violence cases and protecting victims’ rights.  Lynn’s efforts as a public prosecutor have contributed significantly to the safety and protection of Arizona’s crime victims.

  


Laura Reckart
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Laura began her career in prosecution in June 1989 at the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office. Early in her career she established herself as a tenacious prosecutor with an unparalleled work ethic, and by 1991 she was assigned to the Sex Crimes Bureau where she prosecuted defendants who did unspeakable things to the most vulnerable victims. Between 1989 and 1999, Laura served the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office in a variety of different assignments, including Trial Bureau A, Sex Crimes, the Juvenile Division, Gang/ROP, and Homicide. In 2000, Laura became an Assistant Attorney General. Between 2000 and 2006, Laura served the Attorney General as a drug crimes prosecutor, the Director of Victim Services, and a gang prosecutor. In 2006, Laura returned to MCAO, where she has served as a Homicide/Capital Litigation Attorney since 2007. For 25 years, Laura has focused on bringing justice to the victims of the most serious crimes imaginable.


Patti Wortman
Yavapai County Attorney's Office

Patti began her prosecution career at the Gila County Attorney’s Office in 1990, shortly after graduation from law school.  In 2002, Patti was named the Chief Deputy of the Gila County Attorney’s Office. She served as a member of the Juvenile Law Section of the State Bar, on the executive council of the State Bar’s Public Lawyer’s Section, and served as a member of the Chief Deputies Working Group and the Juvenile Justice Working Group.  In 2013, Patti joined the Yavapai County Attorney’s Office, working out of its Verde Valley Office. She took numerous cases to trial and quickly developed a reputation as a determined, but fair, litigator. In 2014, Patti became the supervisor of the Verde Valley office and also supervises the juvenile prosecution team. Patti’s experience and skill have greatly benefitted the citizens of Gila and Yavapai Counties, as well as Arizona.

 

 

2014

David Berkman
Pima County Attorney's Office

David Berkman joined the Pima County Attorney’s Office in 1974.  He has prosecuted hundreds of cases and was the head of both the Major Offenders Program and the Narcotics Unit when he left in 1983 to pursue a career in civil practice.  He returned to PCAO in May 2000 as a civil litigator and was later appointed Chief Criminal Deputy.  David Berkman distinguished himself working tirelessly to advance the principles of criminal justice by representing the public’s interest with integrity, fairness, and professionalism. Some of his most important work has been with young prosecutors, ensuring they received extensive prosecutorial training – professional and ethical.  His highest priority is instilling an understanding of the importance of ethics, integrity, and professionalism in a prosecutor.

 

 

 

 

Jeff Paupore
Yavapai County Attorney's Office

Deputy County Attorney Jeff Paupore graduated in 1982 from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Lansing, Michigan. Jeff joined the prosecution community in January of 1997 when he was elected as the Dickinson County Prosecuting Attorney, a position he held until 2001 when he and his family moved to Arizona. Jeff was hired as a prosecutor in the Yavapai County Attorney’s Office in March of 2001 where he has excelled in all areas of practice. Jeff’s history of APAAC award nominations reflects his unswerving excellence. He was nominated in 2004 and 2006 for the Outstanding Felony Prosecutor of the Year, and in 2011 for the David R. White Victim in Excellence Award. The various responsibilities that Jeff has shouldered over his years with the Yavapai County Attorney’s Office reflect his leadership skills, his reliability, his initiative, and his commitment to public safety.

 

 

2013

Beth Anderson
Pima County Attorney's Office

Beth Anderson is a prosecutor with the Pima County Attorney’s Office.  She graduated Magna Cum Laude with a 4.0 GPA from Arizona State University.  She joined the Pima County Attorney’s Office after graduating second in her class from the ASU College of Law in 1992.  Ms. Anderson is currently assigned to the Narcotics Unit, where she prosecutes drug traffickers, most of whom are career criminals.  She has also served in the Property Crimes and Vehicular Units.  During her career as a prosecutor, she has prosecuted over 300 felony jury trials. Ms. Anderson is one of the most experienced and knowledgeable prosecutors in the office. She serves as a major source of inspiration to all those who work with and know her. She has worked tirelessly throughout her career to honorably serve her community and the citizens of Pima County.

 

Craig Jones
Mesa City Prosecutor's Office

Craig Jones joined the Mesa City Prosecutor’s Office in 1986.  He has held every position in the office from Student Intern to Interim City Prosecutor and is currently Chief Assistant City Prosecutor.  He has accomplished this with professionalism and integrity. In 26 years Craig tried thousands of cases, supervised tens of thousands of other cases, and filed and supervised hundreds of appeals and special actions. He has mentored more than 150 law students and trained over 30 attorneys. In 2005, one of his appeals was published by the Arizona Court of Appeals.  The case, still relevant today, allows prosecutors around Arizona to transfer conflicts openly, ethically, and efficiently. In 1994 APAAC recognized Craig as the first Misdemeanor Prosecutor of the Year. The nomination for this award stated that Craig represented the “backbone and heart that keeps our prosecutorial efforts going day in and day out.”  This statement continues to be true.

 

 

 

Anthony Novitsky
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Tony is entering his 31st year of prosecution, handling cases on the line to supervising and training attorneys at the municipal and county levels.  Over the course of his career, he has conducted from 175 to 200 jury trials and prosecuted cases ranging from parking tickets and barking dogs at the City of Phoenix Prosecutor’s Office to vehicular homicides and other violent crimes at MCAO. In addition, over time he has trained multiple generations of prosecutors helping instruct at APAAC conferences, served on Supreme Court Committees (eg. Serving on The Rule 15 Rewrite Committee from 2000 to 2002, actually drafting the committee comment to Rule 15.1 as it currently appears), instructing at police and fire academies, appearing as a prosecutor guest on radio talk shows, and assisting with the creation of an anti-drinking and driving film called Crossing Deadly Lanes (shown to students in middle schools for many years).

 



Joel Ruechel
Navajo County Attorney's Office

Joel Ruechel is one of those dedicated few who have devoted their life to protecting our communities and preserving our quality of life. Joel has become an institution in the halls of the Navajo County Court House. He is respected by the bench, revered by his co-workers and feared by the defense bar. Joel has attained this lofty status because he conducts his professional and personal life the right way - with dedication, commitment and devotion. A number of the young prosecutors in the office have nicknamed Joel “the Great Oracle” because he seems to know everything. Whenever any prosecutor has an issue they are wrestling with or a trial coming up they make their way to Joel’s office. No matter how busy Joel is, he never hesitates to drop what he is doing to spend as much time as needed to work through the issues, whether they be procedural, evidentiary or ethical.

 

 

2012

 

Terry Jennings
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Terry Jennings has served as a prosecutor with MCAO for 34 years. He primarily specialized in sex crimes cases and was a key contributor to the development of MCAO current sex crimes specialization and protocols. He prosecuted the first priest sex abuse case in Maricopa County. He was also a prosecutor in the prosecution of Father Dale Fushek another high profile sex abuse case involving a priest. In addition to his work in sex crimes, Terry has also supervised other special prosecution areas in the office including Vehicular Crimes, Gangs, Drug Enforcement and Family Violence. In the community he helped to create the Center Against Family Violence in Mesa and to develop their protocols. In recognition of his 34 years of service, he is a deserving recipient of APAAC's Lifetime Achievement Award.

 

 

 

William Moore
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Bill Moore has dedicated almost 40 years to public service. Bill began his career as a staff legal advisor to the Arizona State Senate in 1973, moving to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office in 1979. Bill has spent productive time in nearly every bureau of the Office and handled virtually every type of criminal case prior to becoming a Bureau Chief in the Trial Division. Highlights of Bill's trial experiences include a conviction of serial rapist, Michael Johnson, known as the "Eastside rapist" who was eventually sentenced to over one hundred years in prison. Bill also convicted a defendant known as "Gentle Ben" who used a tomahawk to kill a patron in a bar fight. Bill's most important and lasting legacy will be the many outstanding prosecutors that he supervised, mentored and trained, that continue to serve with distinction and who will mentor and train others into the future.

 

 

 

 

 

2011

Ron Beran
City of Tucson Prosecutor's Office

Leonard Ruiz
Maricopa County Attorney's  Office

2010

Pat Mehrhoff
City of Tucson Prosecutor's Office

2009

John Evans
Arizona Attorney General's Office

Tyler Rich
City of Phoenix Prosecutor's Office

Lawrence Turoff
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Ethan Wolfinger
Yavapai County Attorney's Office

2008

William Clayton
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

John Erickson
Yavapai County Attorney's Office

Diane Gunnels Rowley
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Cameron Holmes
Arizona Attorney General's Office

Thomas Rakin
Pima County Attorney's Office 

2007

Vincent Festa
Cochise County Attorney's Office

Joseph Maziarz
Arizona Attorney General's Office

Mary White
Yuma County Attorney's Office  

2006

Vince H. Imbordino
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Michael J. Lesler
Coconino County Attorney's Office

Kathleen Mayer
Pima County Attorney's Office

2005

Steve B. Jaynes
Yavapai County Attorney's Office

Billie A. Rosen
Arizona Attorney General's Office

2004

Paul W. Ahler
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

John W. Dickinson
Pima County Attorney's Office

James H. Landis
Yavapai County Attorney's Office

Paul McMurdie
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Galen H. Wilkes
Navajo County Attorney's Office

2003

Jerry G. Landau
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Noel J. R. Levy
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Cleve Lynch
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

Robert J. Shutts
Maricopa County Attorney's Office

John P. Todd
Arizona Attorney General's Office

Rick Unklesbay
Pima County Attorney's Office