The Arthur H. Bryant Public Justice Award bestowed by the Oregon Trial Lawyers Association (OTLA) emerged from a nearly unimaginable, life-changing story behind its namesake. The award annually recognizes “an individual or group who, throughout the previous year, strived to create a more just society through creative litigation and innovative work with the broader public interest community.”
In 2002, Arthur Bryant, now Of Counsel to Bailey & Glasser, experienced a traumatic event that dramatically and horrifically impacted his life. Bryant, his wife, Nancy Johnson, and their seven-year-old son, Wally, were driving on a highway in Oregon when an oncoming truck swerved into their lane and hit their car head on. Johnson was injured and Wally had a broken leg while Bryant’s injuries were the most severe. Bryant was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury, two collapsed lungs, broken bones in his arms and legs, and a crushed right hand and foot. He nearly lost his life.
Bryant had been traveling in Oregon after serving as the keynote speaker during the OTLA Annual Convention. All of the family members were able to make a full recovery. In 2003, the OTLA Board voted to rename their annual award, presented each summer, the Arthur H. Bryant Public Justice Award.