Leon M. Cain Community Leadership Award

Stanford Law School has established the Leon M. Cain Community Leadership Award to recognize a student from each class who has made outstanding contributions to enhancing the Stanford Law School community. Initially created in 2018 in response to student input provided to the Diversity and Inclusion Working Group, the law school renamed the award in 2019 to honor Leon M. Cain ’19, who personified the spirit of it. Leon was a beloved member of the Class of 2019, who died in a tragic accident during the summer before his third year at SLS.

Recipients of the Leon M. Cain Community Leadership Award will be recognized at the annual Spring Community Service and Public Interest Awards reception, to be held in May each year. More information can be found here.

These materials describe the nature and purpose of the award, the nomination process, and the selection criteria.


Nomination Process

  • The award may go to a single student from each JD class as well as a single student in the advanced degree program. Individuals may be nominated by other students, faculty, or staff.
  • The nomination must include a written statement of no more than 2 pages describing the bases for which the student should be recognized. The statement should be written, signed and dated by the nominator(s). Additional brief letters of endorsement, not to exceed 2 pages each, may also be provided for each nominee, and should also be signed and dated.
  • A selection committee composed of past recipients, along with a faculty member and staff will review the nominations and select the recipients.
  • The nomination period for 2024 will close at 11:59 pm on Monday, April 8, 2024.

Selection Criteria

Examples of outstanding contributions to enhancing the Stanford Law School community may include:

  • Advancing and improving diversity and inclusion within the community;
  • Building bridges across disparate communities;
  • Expanding and encouraging service activities by members of the Stanford Law School community;
  • Providing substantial personal or academic assistance or mentorship to peers, or
  • Otherwise strengthening the quality of the student experience and helping build the capacity of the school to prepare students to serve as leaders in a diverse nation and world.