The Ruth Bader Ginsburg Scholar Award


The American Constitution Society’s Ruth Bader Ginsburg Award recognizes an outstanding scholar in the early stages of their academic career who has demonstrated those qualities exemplified by Justice Ginsburg: scholarly excellence, the ability to imagine how society might be more just and more equal, and the determination to use the law and one’s scholarship to creatively and strategically make the imagined real.

The 2022 Ruth Bader Ginsburg Award was sponsored by Ramona Strategies, a woman-owned consultancy that partners with organizations to help them better embody and live their values, particularly around cultivating and maintaining equitable and inclusive teams and environments. 


The Awardee will be recognized at the ACS National Convention, via media release, and on the ACS website, and will receive a cash prize of $5,000.


Tenure-track or tenured faculty or faculty with similar status who have been full-time law teachers for 10 years or less as of June 30, 2022 are eligible.


To nominate a candidate or self-nominate for the 2023 Ruth Bader Ginsburg Scholar Award, download, complete, and email the cover sheet available here with the following materials to 

  • A resume or CV 
  • A statement by the person nominating the candidate or by the applicant themselves of 500 to 1500 words, double spaced, setting forth the candidate’s qualifications for the award 
  • PDFs of three papers or a book that demonstrate the candidate’s qualifications for the award 

The deadline for nominations is 11:59 p.m. ET on October 31, 2022. 

Please contact ACS Vice President of Policy and Program Christopher Wright Durocher at with any questions. 

2022 Winner

Abbye Atkinson is the Class of 1965 Assistant Professor of Law at UC Berkeley School of Law, and her research focuses on the law of debtors and creditors as it affects marginalized communities. Her work is forthcoming in the Duke Law Journal and the Texas Law Review Online, and it has been published in the Columbia Law Review, Stanford Law Review, Vanderbilt Law Review, Arizona Law Review, Michigan Journal of Race & Law, and the N.Y.U. Law Review Online.

Before joining Berkeley Law, Atkinson was a Thomas C. Grey Fellow and Lecturer in Law at Stanford Law School and the Reginald F. Lewis Fellow at Harvard Law School.  Previously she worked as an associate attorney in the San Francisco office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, and she served as a law clerk to the Honorable Ronald M. Gould of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and for the Honorable Marilyn Hall Patel of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. She graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School and earned her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Berkeley. Prior to attending law school, she worked as a special education teacher in California public schools.

At Berkeley, Atkinson teaches Contracts, Poverty Law, and a seminar on Debt, Discrimination, and Inequality.

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