Volunteers of the Year


Byron Simpson, Esq- Nashville


Mike Hickman, Esq. - Maryville


John Butler, Esq. - Knoxville 

John Butler was the recipient of the Tennessee Lawyers Assistance Program’s “Volunteer of the Year Award.” The award, also known as “The Stephenson,” after Stephenson Todd, Kingsport attorney and first TLAP Commission Chair, is given to a TLAP volunteer that has gone above and beyond the call of duty in assisting members of the legal profession in crisis. Current TLAP Commission Chair, Judge John Everett Williams, had this to say about Mr. Butler, “John is a fine lawyer, and a credit to the legal profession. He is well deserving of this award.”

Julian Bibb, Esq. - Nashville

Julian Bibb earned the 2017 Elizabeth Collins Award for Distinguished Service by the Tennessee Lawyers Assistance Program (TLAP). The award was supported by the Tennessee Supreme Court and the Tennessee Board of Law Examiners. The award bears the name of Elizabeth Collins, a Memphis area attorney who served as a TLAP Commissioner and Volunteer. Collins was a fierce proponent of TLAP values and programs. She passed away in 2013. Bibb was recognized for his longstanding service to his local community, the Board of Law Examiners, and the administration of justice. Bibb is a Member (Partner) of Stites & Harbison based in Franklin and Nashville, Tenn.


Shuttleworth Williams Law Firm


John Dolan, Esq. - Memphis

Kent Cox, PhD, Memphis 


Stanley Barnett, Esq. - Knoxville

Stanley R. Barnett, Attorney at Law, focuses on criminal defense and orders of protection in the Maryville, Tennessee, area. People across the spectrum of life in East Tennessee can turn to a skilled, experienced lawyer for protection of their rights and futures, beginning with a free initial consultation.

Mr. Barnett is a graduate of the University of Tennessee School of Law who began practicing in 1996, gaining exposure to criminal defense and a wide range of other legal areas. He also has valuable experience as an administrator in the private sector. Today, his law firm is primarily dedicated to defending people against orders of protection and criminal charges such as drug possession or domestic assault. Clients receive the benefit of direct, responsive personal attention and thorough investigation of their cases.

Individuals who have orders of protection against them forfeit their second-amendment right to bear arms and often face restrictions that impact their employment and family relationships. Attorney Barnett is dedicated to helping people understand all they have on the line and all of their legal options in these challenging situations.

Criminal defense for students is another key area of emphasis for Stanley R. Barnett, Attorney at Law. This law firm is a trusted resource for young people who need legal counsel while attending a Tennessee college or university. Mr. Barnett understands the critical importance of a young person's clean criminal record. He is adept at developing strong defense strategies and negotiating for just, reasonable outcomes that enable his clients to move forward.


Honorable Chris Craft, Judicial Volunteer of the Year

Rebecca Freeman, Volunteer of the Year

On April 13th, 2013, Circuit Court Judge Chris Craft was given the first TLAP JAG Volunteer of the Year award during the Saturday banquet of TLAP’s Annual Retreat at Montgomery Bell State Park. Nashville attorney Rebecca (Becky) Freeman received the Stephenson Todd Award for being the TLAP Volunteer of the Year.

The Judicial Assistance Group (JAG) is a network of judges from across the State of Tennessee who volunteer their time to reach out to other judges and to lawyers when needed to ensure TLAP’s consultation, intervention, expertise, or other assistance is available.  JAG members have received training to help them in their volunteer work.  JAG members have also given informational presentations, which are approved for CLE credit, to groups such as the Tennessee Judicial Conference, Tennessee Bar Association, Tennessee General Sessions Judges Conference, Tennessee Municipal Court Judges Conference, Tennessee District Attorneys General Conference, and the Tennessee District Public Defenders Conference, as well as local bar associations throughout the state.  The JAG members in Tennessee have been an integral part of TLAP’s reputation, leading TLAP to be consistently recognized as one of the top three state Lawyers Assistance Programs in the United States. 

Judge Craft has served as Shelby County’s Criminal Court Judge since 1994.  He helped intervene and assist attorneys with mental health and substance abuse issues well before TLAP was created in 1999.  As a TLAP volunteer and JAG member, Judge Craft has developed both a firm but understanding reputation in dealing with attorneys who are struggling with problems that may be impairing their ability to practice in the courtroom. Many attorneys have received treatment and are alive today due to Judge Craft’s dedication and commitment. 

Becky Freeman, winner of the 2012 Stephenson Todd Award, has been a TLAP volunteer for over seven years.  She participated with TLAP staff and other lawyers in an effort to see that TLAP expanded its scope of service to adequately include services for those with issues other than substance abuse.  She served on a committee to address the rash of attorney suicides in Tennessee, and became a certified QPR instructor (Question, Persuade, Refer)-- teaching attorneys across the state a simple suicide prevention technique. She also assisted in developing an all female attorney support group that meets weekly in Nashville. She has been licensed to practice law since 1985 and currently works for Metro General Sessions Court Probation Department for Judge William E. Higgins.

Previous Volunteers of the Year

2012     Bill Robilio, Memphis  

2011     Judge Tom Woodall, Dickson

2010     Buddy Burnett, Nashville

2009     Mark Vorder-Bruegge, Memphis