Kelsey Erickson, general counsel to Sen. Kirk Watson, and Katy Aldredge, capitol director for Rep. Giovanni Capriglione, are this year’s recipients of the James Madison Award presented by the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas.
Erickson and Aldredge were chosen for their efforts to create and pass legislation that makes important repairs to Texas’ open records law, according to a news release from the foundation. The legislation ensured that Texans will have access to key information contained in government contracts with private entities.
The James Madison Award recognizes those who demonstrate outstanding commitment to the principles of the First Amendment and open government.
The foundation will also honor Rep. Joe Moody of El Paso with the Open Government Lawmaker of the Year Award. Moody, the speaker pro tempore of the Texas House of Representatives, advocated to strengthen the Texas Public Information Act and was a key player in aiding the passage of legislation to protect Texans’ free speech rights.
The awards will be presented Sept. 20 during the John Henry Faulk Awards Luncheon amid the foundation’s Bernard and Audre Rapoport State Conference in Austin.
The State Bar of Texas 2019 Texas Gavel Awards will be presented at that same event. The Texas Gavel Awards honor journalism that deepens public understanding of the legal system.