American Board of Trial Advocates to present Judicial Excellence Award to Chancellor Ellen Hobbs Lyle

NASHVILLE, Tenn., April 14, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The Tennessee Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates announced today that the…

NASHVILLE, Tenn., April 14, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The Tennessee Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates announced today that the Judicial Excellence Award will be presented to Chancellor Ellen Hobbs Lyle for her outstanding contributions towards Tennessee’s fair and impartial rulings in addition to her leadership both in and outside the courtroom. Chancellor Lyle serves as judge of Part III of the Chancery Court of Davidson County and has served as a chancellor since 1995.

Aubrey B. Harwell Jr. of the Nashville law firm of Neal & Harwell, PLC, serves as a National Board Member of ABOTA. He described the association’s commitment to the preservation of a fair and impartial judiciary and said the Judicial Excellence Award serves as a tribute and thank you for Chancellor Lyle’s willingness to serve as a key leader on the bench.

«Preserving the quality and independence of the judiciary has been a hallmark of ABOTA’s efforts for decades,» Mr. Harwell said. «Confidence in our nation’s judicial system is profoundly important. ABOTA provides a timely explanation to the public when a judge is unfairly criticized, and over the years ABOTA has urged Congress to support justices, judges and their support staffs.» 

Mr. Harwell added that the award is a cumulative recognition for a lifetime of service. «Chancellor Lyle has consistently received high rankings as a trial judge. Her career, her commitment to Constitutional law, and her work to preserve the historic role of the jury are just a few of the elements that mark her service to the protection of the rule of law.» 

Chancellor Lyle has served 20 years in Davidson County as a state court chancery judge. Her judicial career spans a broad spectrum of business cases including shareholder litigation, noncompetition and trade secrets disputes, corporate dissolutions, contract cases, accountings, mergers and acquisitions, and construction cases. Prior to taking the bench, she was a partner in the Nashville law firm Trabue, Sturdivant & Dewitt (1984-1995), and an associate attorney with Fullbright and Jaworski in Houston, Texas (1981-84). Chancellor Lyle earned her J.D. (1981) and B.A. (Phi Beta Kappa 1978) from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, and is a graduate of the Harpeth Hall School. She is a fifth generation Nashvillian and is married to former Circuit and former Senior Judge Walter C. Kurtz.

Glenn R. Walter, a shareholder of the Knoxville law firm of Lewis Thomason and serves as Chapter President, said that the Judicial Excellence Award will be presented to Chancellor Lyle at the Tennessee Chapter’s Annual Meeting in December.


Founded in 1958, ABOTA is a membership organization of more than 7,600 civil trial attorneys who have been invited to join because of their outstanding trial skills, integrity and civility in the courtroom. ABOTA members are almost evenly divided between plaintiff and defense attorneys.  The Tennessee Chapter is one of 96 ABOTA Chapters nationwide. The ABOTA Foundation is the educational arm of the American Board of Trial Advocates. The Foundation’s mission is to educate young Americans about the right to trial by jury and other constitutional liberties. The ABOTA Foundation has created the Justice by the People curriculum, the James Otis Constitution Day Lectures, and the Teachers Law School. The Foundation is also a lead sponsor of the National High School Mock Trial Championship and has partnerships with leading civic education organizations.

For more information contact:

Brian Tyson at (800) 932-2682


Cision View original content to download multimedia:

SOURCE American Board of Trial Advocates