March 20, 2014 @ 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Williman Room, Benson Center
Santa Clara University
500 El Camino Real, Santa Clara
CA 95053
Sandra Vega

The first Katharine & George Alexander Law Prize was presented in March 2008 and has been awarded annually thereafter. This award has been made possible through the generosity of Katharine & George Alexander to bring recognition to legal advocates who have used their legal careers to help alleviate injustice and inequity. The hope is that recognition of such individuals will improve the image of lawyers around the world.

The winner receives a substantial cash award to be used as the he or she chooses. The winner will be brought to Santa Clara University to be honored at a ceremony in March. The winner will also be invited to participate in lectures and classes and may choose to serve as a teacher, mentor and scholar for a limited period at Santa Clara Law.

Thursday, March 20, 2014
Santa Clara University

Event is free but registration is required.
Register online

5:00 p.m.

Reception, Williman Room, Benson Center

6:00 p.m.

Alexander Law Prize Award
Hossam Bahgat


2014 Award Winner: Hossam Bahgat


Photo copyright Platon. Used with permission.

Hossam Bahgat, age 34, is the founder and, for eleven years was the executive director, of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR), a Cairo-based independent organization defending human rights in Egypt (www.eipr.org/en). Since 2002, the EIPR has used research, advocacy, and litigation to promote and defend the rights to privacy, religious freedom, health, and bodily integrity. Since the 2011 revolution, the EIPR has expanded its scope of work to include transitional justice, the protection of civil liberties and political rights, promotion of economic and social justice and reform of the criminal justice system. With training in political science and international human rights law, Bahgat is also Board Chair of the International Network for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR-Net), and a member of the Board of Directors of the Fund for Global Human Rights. In 2011, Bahgat received Human Rights Watch’s Allison Des Forges Award for Extraordinary Activism.

“As human rights activists, our duty is not always to work on the popular issues, but also to work on issues that might not be popular for the majority. And that, in fact, is where we are most needed.” – Hossam Bahgat, in a 2009 interview with the New Internationalist Magazine.

“Human Rights Watch honors Hossam Bahgat for upholding the personal freedoms of all Egyptians.”— From the statement announcing Bahgat as the 2010 Human Rights Watch’s Allison Des Forges Award for Extraordinary Activism. Read full award statement.

Katharine & George Alexander

Katharine Alexander practiced law for 25 years as a public defender for Santa Clara County and taught law courses for several years at San Jose State University.

The late George Alexander served as professor of law at Santa Clara University for 34 years and as dean of its School of Law for 15 years.

Both Katharine and George have dedicated their lives to instilling in students and lawyers a commitment to justice. Their service to humanity serves as a model for other lawyers.

Selection Committee

Kyle Graham
Assistant Professor of Law, Santa Clara Law

Cynthia Mertens
Professor of Law, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Santa Clara Law

Donald J. Polden
Professor of Law, Dean Emeritus

Margaret Russell
Professor of Law, Santa Clara Law

Alan Scheflin
Professor of Law, Santa Clara Law

Beth Van Schaack
Professor of Law, Santa Clara Law

Tseming Yang
Professor of Law, Santa Clara Law

Nominees must be lawyers who have used their skill, knowledge and abilities in the field of law to correct injustice. The nominees must be individuals who are committed in both heart and mind to alleviating injustice and inequity.

Selection criteria may include factors such as the:

  • Innovative nature of the programs or other activities undertaken
  • Courage and self-sacrifice required
  • Sustainability of the programs the nominee has implemented
  • Number of people benefited

Nomination Form