Pittsburgh Lawyer to Receive PBA Government Lawyer of the Year Award

HARRISBURG, Pa. (Oct. 30, 2023) — Pittsburgh lawyer Rodney R. Akers, retired deputy general counsel in the Governor’s Office of General Counsel (OGC), will receive the Pennsylvania Bar Association (PBA) Government Lawyer of the Year Award during the PBA Committee/Section Day on Nov. 16 in Harrisburg.

The award was founded by the PBA Government Lawyers Committee to honor a government lawyer who has made a significant singular contribution or has dedicated his or her career to outstanding service to the profession for the benefit of the public or a government entity.

Appointed deputy general counsel in November 2007, Akers served in that capacity until March 2023. He was responsible for managing business and technology aspects for the OGC, and he oversaw the hiring committee, professional responsibility training initiatives and intern/extern programs. Akers’ principal areas of legal expertise include information technology, intellectual property, regulatory compliance, electronic discovery and contracts.

Beginning his career in the private sector, Akers later served in a dual capacity as deputy director of the City of Pittsburgh Information Resources Department and as special counsel to the city’s Department of Law. In addition, he served as chief counsel to the Patient Safety Authority, Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission and Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.

An adjunct professor at University of Pittsburgh Law School for more than 19 years, Akers teaches courses that are part of the certificate program in intellectual property and technology law. Recently, he also accepted an adjunct professor position at Carlow University. Akers is a frequent lecturer and author on social media, telecommunications, utility deregulation and outside counsel management topics.

Within the PBA, Akers is chair of the Minority Bar Committee (MBC) Outreach Subcommittee and a member of the MBC Executive Council, co-vice chair of the Technology Committee and a member of the Government Lawyers, In-House Counsel and Judicial Evaluation committees. He is a Zone 12 delegate, representing Allegheny County lawyers to the PBA House of Delegates.

Akers received his Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School and his bachelor’s degree with honors from the University of Virginia. He served as a law clerk to Judge John R. Hargrove Sr. on the U.S. District Court in Maryland.