Six students from Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College and Spelman College have been awarded the Arnall Golden Gregory Excellence in Leadership Book Award.

Arnall Golden Gregory LLP is a law firm with offices in Atlanta, Miami and Washington, D.C., that serves the business needs of growing public and private companies.  Its areas of focus include corporate, litigation, healthcare, international, employment, real estate, life sciences, global logistics, privacy and intellectual property law.


The annual award, which includes a $1,000 scholarship, recognizes outstanding rising seniors who are interested in the law.  Recipients are active community volunteers, stellar students and participants in student leadership programs.

Expanding the number of award winners this year from two students to six, and including for the first time Clark Atlanta University, demonstrates Arnall Golden Gregory’s commitment to diversity and inclusion in the legal field.

“Arnall Golden Gregory believes that pipeline initiatives like the Excellence in Leadership Book Award are critical to promoting diversity in the legal profession,” said Partner Althea J.K. Broughton, a member of AGG’s Diversity Committee who is involved in hiring at the firm. “We are pleased to support the legal aspirations of these very worthy students, and we are excited that we were able to expand this initiative to reach even more students this school year.”

This year’s recipients are:

Dionne Ashley Hopkins, Clark Atlanta University: Ms. Hopkins is a political science major who wants to attend law school and pursue a career as a political scientist. She participated in the John Marshall Mock Trial Competition and received a second place award for Best Witness and third place award for Mock Trial Team. Ms. Hopkins participates in community service through the Light of Truth Center, which helps women battling with addiction, and Jumpstart in Atlanta, an early education program. She serves as the women’s editor for Society Magazine and is a member of Clark Atlanta’s Political Science Association and Pre-alumni Council.

Estelle D. Williams, Clark Atlanta University: A political science major, Ms. Williams is involved in numerous school and community activities and organizations, demonstrating her leadership skills and commitment to excellence. She serves as secretary of Reading In Random Places, an organization dedicated to promoting reading comprehension and literacy, building better study habits and serving the community. Ms. Williams also is treasurer for Being a Leader Activating Cultivating Knowledge, and belongs to the Pre-alumni Council, Pre-law Society, Political Science Association, and National Association of Blacks in Criminal Justice. Ms. Williams volunteers for community service projects on and off campus.

William Lee, Morehouse College: Mr. Lee, a political science major, is a Morehouse College Honors Program Scholar and has been an Honor Roll Student for four semesters. His interest in law led him to an internship with the New Jersey Fifth Legislative District Office in Camden, N.J., where he helped district constituents find solutions to community problems and served as a liaison between constituents and elected state officials in organizing government-affiliated events. Mr. Lee also was an intern with the Camden County Office of the Clerk, where he gained experience providing administrative assistance with mortgages, liens, tax sales, municipal and county maps, and performing general secretarial duties to assist the county clerk and office staff. Mr. Lee is co-president of the Morehouse-Spelman Pre-law Society and a member of the Political Action Committee of the Morehouse College NAACP. He volunteers with the H.O.P.E. Institute, a student organization that encourages youth to become involved in social change.

Laurence Hull, Morehouse College: Mr. Hull, an international studies major, has been on the Honor Roll and Dean’s List every semester. He is a member of the Omicron Delta Kappa Leadership Honor Society and the Morehouse-Spelman Pre-law Society. Mr. Hull has completed leadership programs at Princeton University through the Woodrow Wilson School of Public & International Affairs in Princeton, New Jersey; at American University in Washington D.C., where he participated in an international law seminar and in an internship and research project; and at the University of Iowa College of Law through the Philip G. Hubbard Law School Preparation Program. Mr. Hull’s interest in international law led him to a foreign policy internship with the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, an internship with the British Consulate General in the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office in Atlanta, and to form his own tutoring company during a stay in London. He serves as a presidential ambassador for Morehouse’s Office of the President, as well as president, team coach and head delegate of the Morehouse College Model United Nations Team.  Mr. Hull is a tutor and coordinator at the Frederick Douglas Tutoring Institute.

Danielle E. Dirickson, Spelman College: Ms. Dirickson, who is majoring in international studies with a concentration in international development, is a member of the Alpha Lambda Delta Honors Society and the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. She took part in the IES Abroad Program in Milan, where she studied social innovation and learned about social and environmental sustainability strategies. Ms. Dirickson’s interest in law and politics led her to serve as the assistant special events coordinator to the Atlanta mayor’s office. She is a member of the Spelman College / Emory Law School Black Student Association Mentoring Program and the Spelman Women Empowered Through Professional Training Program, and she served as a Spelman College Student Orientation Leader.

Michelae Hobbs, Spelman College: Ms. Hobbs is a philosophy major who is co-president of the Morehouse-Spelman Pre-law Society, a reporter for HO– — USEsports News, and a member of the Phi Alpha Delta Pre-law Fraternity and the Sister 2 Sister Mentoring Program. Her interest in law led her to serve as an intern with the Athens-Clark County Magistrate Court where she assisted with clerical work.