News Release

Senator Harry Reid Receives Distinguished Public Service Award

Former United States Senator Harry Reid has been honored for his 34-year career in politics with the Distinguished Public Service Award by the J. Reuben Clark Law Society. Senator Reid from Nevada was the Democratic leader of the Senate for more than a decade before his recent retirement.


The award was presented to Senator Reid by Elder Lance B. Wickman, general counsel of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, at the society’s annual fireside held at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City Friday, January 20, 2017.

In accepting the award from Elder Wickman, Senator Reid asked for a moment of personal privilege. He said he was surprised to see a person in the audience (at the fireside) that had made a very big difference in his life. Senator Reid said he and M. Byron Fisher were law students together and they had been moot court partners. A moot court is an opportunity for law school students to present a legal case in an educational setting.

On that occasion where the two of them would be making a presentation together, Senator Reid’s partner had said he wanted to have a prayer before they presented; Fisher offered the prayer. “I’ve never forgotten that, Byron. It really meant a great deal to me because it set the pattern [for] what I, as a member of the Church, should do [in] everything that I try to do, as exemplified by you to be led by the Spirit.”

The event was broadcast via the Church satellite system to more than 100 locations globally.

The Church teaches members the importance of civic engagement in the communities in which they live.

The J. Reuben Clark Law Society is a professional association of Mormon attorneys, law students, judges and law professors. The organization has over 20,000 members with more than 200 chapters in the U.S., Canada and other countries.

“We affirm the strength brought to the law by a lawyer's personal religious conviction. We strive through public service and professional excellence to promote fairness and virtue founded upon the rule of law,” states the mission statement of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society.  

Earlier in the day, Senator Reid attended a service recognition luncheon attended by senior Church leaders. 

Style Guide Note:When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online Style Guide.