FORT WORTH – Benson Varghese, managing partner of the law firm Varghese Summersett, has been named the 2019 Outstanding Young Lawyer by the Tarrant County Young Lawyer’s Association (TCYLA).
Varghese received the award on Tuesday, May 7 during the annual Law Day Awards Dinner at the Fort Worth Club. The event, which is hosted by TCYLA and the Tarrant County Bar Association, recognizes outstanding members of the bar and judiciary.
The Outstanding Young Lawyer Award is presented to a Tarrant County attorney who has demonstrated professional proficiency and service to the profession and service to the community.
“I am incredibly humbled to stand before you and to receive this award - not just for myself but also as a member of the criminal bar," Varghese told the audience. "It's rare for a member of the criminal bar to be selected as an Outstanding Young Lawyer. I can't remember the last time it happened. Thank you for the recognition.
“If there is one thing I can tell young lawyers it is to learn from established attorneys. I had the good fortune of working with a group of attorneys right out of law school, and I learned so much from the best of the best in Tarrant County in my practice area…Don’t be afraid to take the best from your mentors – many of whom are in this room tonight.”
Varghese was one of five local attorneys who were recognized Tuesday night for their service to the legal community and community at large. Other award recipients included:
- Gary L. Nickelson, Blackstone Award
- Judge Wayne Salvant, Silver Gavel Award
- Bobbie G. Edmonds, Professionalism Award
- Wade A Barrow, Outstanding Mentor Award
At age 37, Varghese is the founder of the largest and fastest-growing criminal defense firm in Tarrant County. A former Tarrant County prosecutor, Varghese started the firm five years ago in a small 10 x 15 office. Today, Varghese Summersett occupies 8,500 square feet of space in downtown Fort Worth and employs attorneys of the highest caliber.
Varghese serves as an officer on the Board of the Tarrant County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and is an avid supporter of a number of philanthropic and non-profit organizations, including Tarrant County Volunteer Services (TVAS), Habitat for Humanity, WORTH, Rotary Club of Fort Worth and the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, among others. Last year, Varghese Summersett was honored with the 2018 Law Firm Pro Bono Award by TVAS for the firm’s work assisting indigent attorneys who can’t afford an attorney. And last month, the firm again awarded scholarships to students with autism and Down syndrome, an annual cause established in honor of two of the firm’s senior attorneys who have children with special needs.
On Tuesday night, Varghese was introduced at the reception by his law partner and wife, Anna Summersett, who touted his philosophy to “do what is right, every time, and do it without fear or hesitation.”
“Using that simple model, Benson quickly grew a one-person shop in a tiny rented office to the largest criminal defense firm in Dallas/Fort Worth,” Summersett told the audience. “He has since been named things like, ‘Entrepreneur of Excellence, Minority Leader in Business, Top Attorney, and Super Lawyer Rising Star.’ He pushed his firm to become the sixth fastest growing company in Fort Worth and the 782nd fastest growing company in the country.
“He does it better because he does it differently. He inspires me, our 2 month-old son, and even his adversaries across the aisle to do it better, too.”