Tom Nelson Recognized for Service to the Profession by Eighth Circuit Bar Association


Tom Nelson was named the Minnesota recipient of the Eighth Circuit Bar Association's Richard S. Arnold Award for Distinguished Service and Lifetime Achievement at the recent Federal Eighth Circuit Judicial Conference in Rogers, Ark.

The judges in each of the Eighth Circuit's district courts chose the honorees based on the following criteria: achieving personal excellence in his or her field, being a leader in the legal community as reflected in positions the honoree has held in bar associations and professional organizations, contributing significant volunteer legal work to underserved members of the community, being honored by his or her peers and serving as a mentor or role model for less experienced attorneys or students interested in law. 

Following in the footsteps of Minneapolis lawyer Allen Saeks and Kansas City lawyer Paul Donnelly, Nelson is the third member of Stinson Leonard Street, and its predecessor firms to receive the award.

In nominating Nelson for the award, the district judges of Minnesota said he is a "superb lawyer who has dedicated countless hours to the Eighth Circuit and our district on various projects. Tom never says no to helping our court."

The award is named after Richard S. Arnold, the former chief judge of the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals.

Nelson is a partner in Stinson Leonard Street's Minneapolis office. His practice has been nationally recognized in commercial litigation, insurance law, banking and finance, construction and real estate for many years. In 2016 he was named "Lawyer of the Year" for insurance law in Minneapolis by Best Lawyers and was named an "Attorney of the Year" for 2015 by Minnesota Lawyer. He is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and was recently inducted into the Litigation Counsel of America. He was President of the Hennepin County Bar Association during the 2014-2015 bar year and is now joining the leadership track of the Minnesota Bar Association as secretary and future president.

Nelson serves on the Minnesota State Bar Association Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Council. He is chair of the American Swedish Institute board of trustees; and serves on the boards of the Global Rights for Women, the Givens Foundation for African American Literature and the Minnesota Landmark Center in St. Paul.

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