Brad Phillips Wins Civil Rights Leadership Award

Munger, Tolles & Olson litigator Bradley S. Phillips received the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law’s Whitney North Seymour Award – the most prestigious award given to an attorney by the LCCRUL – on Dec. 5, 2018.

The award recognizes a LCCRUL board member for his or her lifelong devotion to promoting equal justice under the law and whose legal career exemplifies that of the eponymous Whitney North Seymour, a former Assistant Solicitor General, who was committed to advancing and protecting civil rights. Mr. Seymour served as chairman of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and as president of the American Arbitration Association, the New York Legal Aid Society, the New York City Bar and the American College of Trial Lawyers.

Recently, Mr. Phillips successfully represented a group of homeless, mentally disabled residents of Los Angeles County in obtaining significant reforms in the treatment of mentally disabled inmates upon discharge from Los Angeles County jails.

The case is only one recent example of Mr. Phillips’s commitment to pro bono clients, who have included immigrants, disabled persons, farm workers, voters, prisoners, the homeless, Native Americans, and many non-profit organizations. Among his numerous successes during his four-decade career, he obtained an injunction against lethal injections in California; obtained an injunction requiring California to use voting machines that did not have the effect of depriving citizens of their right to vote; prosecuted a federal lawsuit that resulted in immigration officials’ ending a practice of forcibly administering anti-psychotic drugs to immigration detainees without a medical exam or a court order; and obtained reversals of the convictions of two death-row inmates and continues to represent another in Louisiana.

Mr. Phillips serves on the LCCRUL board of directors and is the former co-chair. A longtime leader in the organization, he also served for years as a member of the executive committee, chair of the Amicus Briefs Committee and the Power of Congress Task Force and as a regional vice chair.

Active in numerous organizations committed to promoting the civil rights of individuals, Mr. Phillips served as president of the board of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles and as chair of California Common Cause and member of the National Governing Board of Common Cause. He has also served on the boards of the National Immigration Law Center, Public Counsel, the Western Law Center for the Handicapped, the California Bar Foundation, Democracy 21, and the Los Angeles County Bar Association, where he was Chair of the Legal Services for the Poor Committee.