Office of Communications and Public Relations
August 6, 2010
Allan B. Head, executive director of the North Carolina Bar Association since 1981, has received the Bolton Award, the highest honor bestowed by the National Association of Bar Executives.
Presentation of the award took place on Friday, Aug. 6, in San Francisco during the annual meetings of the NABE and the American Bar Association.
Head, who received his bachelor’s and law degrees from Wake Forest University in 1966 and 1969 respectively, joined the NCBA staff in 1973 as executive secretary. He served as president of the NABE in 2006-07.
The Bolton Award was presented at the Joint Luncheon of the National Conference of Bar Presidents, NABE and the National Conference of Bar Foundations.
The Bolton Award is NABE’s highest accolade and recognizes the exceptional professionalism and achievement of a bar executive. It is named in honor of the late Fred Bolton, executive director and secretary of the Pennsylvania Bar Association from 1966 until 1977.
The executive director and treasurer of the North Carolina Bar Association (NCBA) since 1981, Head is a native of Atlanta. Following four years of military service as a lawyer assigned to U.S. Army Security Agency in Kassel and Augsburg, Germany, he returned to the United States in 1973 and joined the North Carolina Bar Association. Head also has served as a director of the Wake County Bar Association since 1974 and as its treasurer since 1981.
Regarded as a cutting-edge leader, Head was instrumental in launching successful programs such as the Lawyers Mutual Liability Insurance Company of North Carolina; the Lawyer Referral Service, referring more than 60,000 members of the public every year; and the Health Benefit Trust, offering health insurance coverage to more than 8,000 attorneys and their staffs. In a state that has an elected judiciary, Head continues to urge the NCBA’s legislative program to have a merit selection enacted. He is a legal services proponent who supports a very aggressive pro bono program and Legal Aid of North Carolina. Also active within the ABA, he has most recently served as a member of the organization’s Hurricane Katrina Task Force and as chair of the ABA Standing Committee on Bar Activities and Services.
He is locally and nationally renowned for his commitment to the legal profession as well as the recognition of association management as a profession. Head has chaired NABE’s leadership development task force, chief staff executives committee and chief staff executives retreat and was installed as president in 2006-2007, having held offices that include president-elect, vice president, treasurer, board member and executive committee member. Head, according to a past NCBA president, “displays professionalism, high character and utmost integrity in everything he does. In situations where difficult choices must be made, he always admonishes those making the decision to do the right thing.”