NOSSCR Awards Eileen P. Sweeney Distinguished Service Award to N. David Kornfeld, Esq. and the Nancy G. Shor Leadership Award to Rudolph Patterson, Esq.

The National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives (NOSSCR), a leading expert in the field of social security disability law, presented two prestigious awards at its recent national conference: the Eileen P. Sweeney Distinguished Service Award was awarded posthumously to N. David Kornfeld, Esq and the Nancy G. Shor Leadership Award was awarded posthumously to Rudolph Patterson, Esq. The work and actions of each of these attorneys have made significant improvements in the quality and availability of representation of claimants. 

The Nancy G. Shor Leadership Award, named for NOSSCR’s founder and Executive Director from 1979 to 2013, is presented to an individual whose work and actions for NOSSCR have gone above and beyond – to support the organization’s ongoing efforts secure a financial lifeline for people with disabilities.

Rudolph Patterson was a visionary who helped to create NOSSCR and long advocated for people with disabilities. He was instrumental in getting private attorneys to represent SSI claimants, and created several partnerships between legal services organizations and the private bar to forward this goal. He was NOSSCR’s second president and the only one in its history to serve two terms.

In addition to NOSSCR, Rudolph devoted much of his legal career to the State Bar of Georgia and the ABA, serving as president of the State Bar of Georgia and as a member of the Georgia Board of Governors for almost two decades. He was chair of several committees within the State Bar, including the Bar’s Ethics Committee and also served on the ABA Commission on Law and Aging. He was a partner at Westmoreland, Patterson and Moseley until his retirement. In 2007 Rudolph received the State Bar of Georgia’s highest honor: the Distinguished Service Award. Other awards received during his long legal career included the ABA General Practice and Trial Section’s Tradition of Excellence award and the Georgia Southwestern State University’s 21st Century Leadership Award.

Rudolph’s widow Margaret and son Jay accepted the award on his behalf. Margaret spoke briefly to say, “Rudolph had a vision. That vision came true. He would be very proud. Thank you.”

The Eileen P. Sweeney Award is presented to individuals whose outstanding service has improved the quality and availability of advocacy for Social Security claimants and the Social Security adjudicatory process. Eileen P. Sweeney was a nationally recognized expert on issues affecting people with disabilities who receive federal and state benefits.

Attorney N. David Kornfeld who died unexpectedly in March of this year was an experienced practitioner in Illinois. His friend and colleague, Barry Schultz, accepted the award on behalf of his family. Mr. Schultz read a letter from David’s widow, saying, “ David was a rare person who left things in a better place than he found them. Inaction was not acceptable to David. He was a passionate advocate... There is an adage that ‘if you save one life it is as if you save the world’; this is how David lived his life. There are stars whose radius is visible on earth, and David was one of them. We hope David’s work inspires everyone. We are deeply honored.”

“I am honored to have worked with these two fine attorneys,” said Barbara Silverstone, NOSSCR’s Executive Director. Each of them, working in his own way, has improved the Social Security disability system and the lives of those who depend on these important programs.”




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About the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives (NOSSCR)

NOSSCR, a specialized bar association for attorneys and other advocates who represent people with disabilities, has been a pioneer in legal continuing education and public policy advocacy since 1979. Our members represent Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income claimants through the adjudication process, advocating for the income rights of people with disabilities. For more information, visit


To request an interview with a NOSSCR spokesperson, contact Maria Myotte at or 720-352-6153.

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