Brandi Pikes wins Leaders of Tomorrow Award during Women’s Justice Awards in Missouri

After dedicating her time to becoming a leader and pursuing a legal career, Brandi Pikes, an Alcorn State University alumna, is gaining favor on her rise to prominence in the legal realm.

Missouri Lawyers Media presented Pikes with the Leaders of Tomorrow Award Friday, May 4 during its 20th annual Women's Justice Awards at the Four Seasons Hotel in St. Louis, Missouri. Missouri Lawyers Media has been serving Missouri professionals for over 100 years. The business comprises Missouri's largest and most expert legal news operation, reporting on the business of law and the people's business, in the form of enterprise coverage of the courts, politics, government, real estate, and general business.

Pikes, who attends law school at Washington University in pursuit of a Juris doctorate, is proud of the hard work that's got her to this point in her career.

"I am grateful to receive this award," said Pikes, who earned a bachelor's degree in mass communications in 2010. "Throughout my law school journey, I have remained committed to using the knowledge I gained and the resources Washington University provided to help me assist my community. To be recognized by the legal community for exemplifying leadership and having a passion for making a difference is a wonderful honor."

During her time as a Teach for America Corp Member in Jacksonville, Florida, Pikes realized her calling after conversing with students from the juvenile detention center. Listening to the stories of subpar education inspired Pikes to become a change agent for their environment.

"Listening to the experiences of some of my eighth-grade students with the juvenile justice system inspired me to pursue a legal career. They told me that when they were incarcerated in the juvenile detention center, they were not taught by quality instructors nor had access to many academic resources, but they still were required to take the state's standardized performance test. When I started law school, I knew I wanted to use my degree to decrease the impact of educational inequity."

Being an advocate for female and minority lawyers is also a mission for Pikes. She believes that more representation should be present from all races and genders.

"I feel that there is a need to see more females and minorities in positions of power and leadership in the legal field. Since our clients are often diverse, I feel that the legal field should try to mirror the diversity of the clients it serves."

The future looks promising for Pikes. She plans to take the July 2018 Ohio Bar Exam and later become an education and employment litigator. Her goals include creating a sustainable non-profit organization and becoming a judge.