The Department of Justice held its 26th annual Executive Office for United States Attorneys (EOUSA) Director’s Awards Ceremony today, during which 146 award recipients from more than 30 districts were recognized for their dedication to carrying out the Department of Justice’s mission. Among the award recipients, from the Northern District of Mississippi, were Assistant United States Attorney Robert H. Norman and retired First Assistant United States Attorney Thomas W. Dawson who were recognized for their superior performance. Recipients included Assistant United States Attorneys, law enforcement agents, litigation teams and others who have made outstanding contributions in federal, state and local law enforcement.

“These award recipients have been honored for their service and commitment to our country, as well as to their local communities,” said Attorney General Eric Holder. “Each of these dedicated servants has carried out the important mission of the Department of Justice. Their accomplishments have advanced the interests of justice on behalf of the American people.”

Jim M. Greenlee, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Mississippi, reiterating the reasons for the award found in the Awards Program, stated “The Department of Justice recognized ‘Thomas W. Dawson and Bob Norman for their outstanding work on the investigation and prosecution of United States v. Richard “Dickie” Scruggs, et al. Their unparalleled dedication, skill and judgment in this highly sensitive case with national attention resulted in convictions of all defendants. The team performed flawlessly, exhibiting extraordinary performance under pressure while executing tactical and strategic decisions in the successful prosecution that exposed a pattern of attempts to influence the judiciary. Their work has made a lasting positive impact on the Mississippi courts, attorneys and our system of justice.’”

Robert H. Norman is a senior Assistant United States Attorney in the Criminal Division of the Northern District of Mississippi. Norman specializes in difficult criminal litigation including civil rights, capital crimes and sensitive public corruption litigation. He is a career prosecutor, having served for 20 years as an AUSA and before that as an Assistant District Attorney.

Thomas W. Dawson, a seasoned, career prosecutor having served in the Department of Justice for 36 years, retired on January 2, 2009. From 2004 to his retirement, Dawson served as the First Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of Mississippi, where his primary duties were to manage the office and its litigation and to handle sensitive and difficult public corruption cases assigned to him by the United States Attorney. Over the course of his career, he has served as trial attorney in the Criminal Division at Main Justice, line AUSA, OCDETF Chief, Senior Litigation Counsel, First Assistant United States Attorney and Associate Independent Counsel. He has prosecuted significant drug, white collar, and public corruption cases among many other types of federal prosecutions.

The extraordinary work of Norman and Dawson was critical to the Department of Justice’s continuing mission to enforce all of our nation’s laws, including prosecuting civil rights violations, gang violence, drug crimes, and especially those laws that protect our vital institutions, such as our system of justice.

Tom Dawson, now retired from the Department of Justice, is the co-author of the recently released book called Kings of Tort documenting the 20 year saga of judicial bribery in Mississippi.