We’re happy to report that this week The Legal Writing Institute awarded the 2012 Golden Pen Award to Matthew Butterick, author of the essential reference manual, Typography for Lawyers. The announcement is reprinted below. Congratulations, Matthew!
I am delighted to announce that the Legal Writing Institute’s Golden Pen Award for 2012 goes to Attorney Matthew Butterick.
Matthew Butterick is the designer of the popular website Typography for Lawyers, and of the book by the same name. Matthew Butterick has become the go-to person for document design information in the legal world. In the three short years since his website first went live, and the twelve months since his book Typography for Lawyers was published, he has made a very large impact on legal practice. Otherwise-temperate critics have showered his work with praise. Harvard’s William Rubenstein calls Butterick “a messiah.” Bryan Garner describes Butterick’s advice as “infallible,” and the first edition of Typography for Lawyers as not only “bold and fresh and original” but also “fully developed,” reading like “a fifth edition.”
Many lawyers have known, or at least have suspected, that their document-design practices were not ideal, and might even be holding them back. Yet many have been intimidated by the complex settings of their word-processing software, let alone the seemingly arcane practices of professional type setters. Butterick’s clear, easy-to-follow website and reference book take the fear and mystery out of document design for legal texts, giving lawyers of all kinds the tools they need to let their polished prose truly shine.
Mr. Butterick has also designed two typefaces for attorneys: Alix and Equity. Alix is a monospaced typeface, like Courier, but immeasurably superior. Lawyers who are occasionally required to set documents in a monospaced font now have a more readable choice. Mr. Butterick’s newest font, Equity, is a proportional typeface, like Times New Roman, and has similar overall dimensions and architectural features, allowing it to be easily substituted for Times New Roman. Equity is specifically designed not just for use in long documents but for legal documents in particular.
Please join us in congratulating Mr. Butterick at a ceremony to be held during the 15th Biennial Conference of the Legal Writing Institute [later this year].
Kenneth D. Chestek
President, The Legal Writing Institute