The Marion Griffin-Frances Loring Award

The Marion Griffin-Frances Loring Award was established in 1989, on the 10th anniversary of the founding of the AWA, to recognize those who have made outstanding contributions to women in the legal profession. The award originally was designated the “Frances Grant Loring Award,” and the recipient was Frances Grant Loring in recognition of her courage, vision, humor, faith and dedication. At Ms. Loring's request, the award was designated the “Marion Griffin-Frances Loring Award” in honor of the first woman elected to the Tennessee House of Representatives.
the Honorable Claudia Haltom
2018 Marion Griffin-Frances Loring
Award Honoree

Past Marion Griffin-Frances Loring Award Recipients


1989       Frances Grant Loring

1990       The Honorable Martha Craig "Cissy"                       Daughtrey

1991       Gail O. Mathes

1992       The Honorable Julia S. Gibbons

1993       The Honorable Karen R. Williams

1994       The Honorable Bernice B. Donald

1995       Blanchard E. Tual

1996       The Honorable Penny J. White

1997       Dorothy J. Pounders

1998       Ellen B. Vergos

1999       The Honorable Janice M. Holder

2000       Veronica F. Coleman

2001       The Honorable Carol J. Chumney

2002       Linda L. Holmes

2003       The Honorable Kay Spalding Robilio

2004       Susan Clark

2005       The Honorable Rita L. Stotts

2006       Barbara Zoccola

2007       Amy J. Amundsen

2008       Ruby R. Wharton

2010       Professor Janet L. Richards

2011       The Honorable Donna M. Fields 

2012       Amy P. Weirich

2013       The Honorable Paulette J. Delk

2014       Linda Warren Seely

2015       The Honorable Holly Kirby

2016       Maureen Holland

2017       Mary Wolff

Originally from Marion County Tennessee, and now a longtime Memphis resident, Claudia Haltom has built a prolific resumé over the years having been a former Judicial Magistrate for Memphis and Shelby County Juvenile Court, an Assistant County Attorney for Shelby County Government and the Primary Attorney for the Health Department, Juvenile Court and Shelby County Board of Education. Before that, she served as a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Judge Charles Nearn of the Tennessee Court of Appeals. She also served as Special Chancellor for Shelby County Chancery Court and worked within the world of academia as a member of the adjunct faculty at Rhodes College where she coordinated legal seminars. Today, she is CEO and founder of the nonprofit, A Step Ahead Foundation, dedicated to providing long-acting, reversible contraception (LARC), such as implants, to prevent unintended pregnancies.


After 17 years as a Juvenile Court Judicial Magistrate, Ms. Haltom took early retirement to seek a solution to unplanned teen pregnancy, which she sees as believes is one of the root causes of poverty in our state.  A Step Ahead was formed in 2011.  Before that, women and especially teens did not have easy access to effective methods of long acting, reversible birth control.  By paying for the most effective methods of birth control, A Step Ahead Foundation intends to improve educational, economic, and health outcomes for women. Furthermore, by encouraging birth spacing, it will increase positive pregnancy outcomes for the mother and the child, lower infant mortality, and decrease poverty by reducing economic strain.


Since its beginnings, A Step Ahead has provided birth control for more than 5700 women and has provided half a million dollars in scholarships so that women can focus on their education instead of worrying about unwanted pregnancies.


Ms. Haltom’s awards as related to her work with A Step Ahead include: Women of Achievement Determination Award, 2016; Common Table Health Alliance Population Health Impact Leader, 2016; Girls Inc. of Memphis BOLD Award, 2016; and Tennessee Juvenile Court Services Association Humanitarian Award, 2016.  She also was the recipient of The Tennessee Medical Association Community Service Award, 2015; The Memphis Business Journal Healthcare Heroes Award, 2015; and The Tennessee Bar Association Public Service Award, 2015.

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Address: PO Box 770186

Memphis, TN 38177

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