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In his years as defender of human rights, animal rights and many other causes, organizations have recognized Mike’s efforts and work by awarding him with some of their most prestigious awards. What follows is a listing of the recognition he’s received throughout the years.

Mario Cuomo Acts of Courage Award

DPF, 19 November 2019

Hamill Family Lecture

University of San Francisco Law School, 30 October 2019

Humanitarian Award

Rainbow/PUSH, 4 October 2019

William O. Douglas Award

Public Counsel, 3 October 2018

Herbert and Sara Ehrmann Award

Mass. Citizens Against the DP, 30 April 2017

President’s Award

California Attorneys for Criminal Justice, 10 December 2016

Bob Berke Human Rights award

Pacific Palisades Democratic Club, 22 August 2016

City of Second Chances Award

Program for Torture Victims,19 September 2015

Pongo Environmental Award

Orang Utan Republik,19 October 2014

Pongo Awards honor those "who have made significant contributions to protect the welfare of all living species via advocacy, leadership, public service, ethical commerce, education and research."

John O’Donohue Integrity Award

Concern America,18 march 2013

President’s Award

Mexican-American Bar of Ventura Co., 19 October 2012

Don and Arvonne Fraser Human Rights Award

MN Advocates for HR , 21 June 2012

Public Service Award

Tom Mesereau Free Legal Clinic, 19 November 2011

2011 Thomas Jefferson Award

Military Religious Freedom Foundation, 21 May 2011

Stanley Sheinbaum Award

ACLU of Southern California, 29 September 2010

National Civil Liberties Award

ACLU of Georgia, Atlanta, 8 October 2009

Peace and Justice Award

Office of the Americas, 16 November 2008

Peace and Justice Hero Award

Phoenix Chapter 75, Veterans for Peace, 10 May 2008

Lifetime Achievement Award

NCADP, San Jose Conference, 19 January 2008

Person of the Year

Al Martinez, L.A. Times, 31 December 2007

Public Activist Award (Human Rights advocacy for the incarcerated)

Centerforce, 22 October 2007


Citizen Activist Award

FTCR “Rage for Justice”, 8 June 2007


Civil Liberties Champion Award

ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties, 24 February 2007


National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) Humanitarian Award

22 February 2007


L.A. Chapter, National Lawyers Guild Award

11 June 2006


Humanitarian Award

California Safe Schools (with Sheinbaum), 8 June 2006


Doctors of Laws, Honoris Causa

Utica College, Utica, NY 14 May 2006


“The First Annual Mike Farrell Human Rights Award”

Death Penalty Focus, 19 April 2006


“Tavel-Resnick Award”

presented to Mike Farrell and Shelley Fabares by “For Love of Life” “for significant contributions to society – by helping those in need”;

Stamford, CT, 14 October 2005


“Donald Wright Award”

California Attorneys for Criminal Justice, SF 11 December 2004. For “significant contributions to the criminal justice system”


Doctor of Public Service, Honoris Causa

Notre Dame du Namur University, Belmont CA, 2 May 2004


“Artivist Award for Human Rights Advocacy”

Artivist organization, 27 April 2004


Voices of Courage & Conscience

Muslim Public Affairs Community 16 October 2003


Outstanding Service Award

Death Penalty Focus, 22 April 2003


“ACLU of Southern CA 2003 Garden Party Award”

ACLU Southern CA, 2003


The Stephen Donaldson Award

Stop Prisoner Rape, November 2002


“2002 Gabriel Award for Personal Achievement”

UNDA organization, 2002


“2002 Gleitsman Foundation Citizen Activist Award”

Gleitsman Foundation, 2002


2001 Actors Integrity Award

American Brain Injury Foundation, October 2001


PETA Humanitarian Award

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, 8 September 2001


“Louis M. Brown Conflict Preventing Award”

Dispute Resolution Services Associates, 2000


“Board of Director’s Award”

CIMA (Catholics in Media Associates), 2000


“Role Model Award”

“Women for…. “, 1999


“Inaugural AKA Role Model Award”

Association of Korean Adoptees, 1999


“Humanitarian Award”

Mary Magdalene Project, 1996


“Valentine Davies Award”

WGA, 1996


“Namaste Award”

Social and Political Activism, 1995


Social and Political Activism Award

Hollywood Women’s Political Community, 1995


“Doctor of Humane Letters”, Honoris Causa

Colorado College, 1995


“Michael Doheny Humanitarian Award”

CONCERN/America, 1994


“Norma Zarky Humanitarian Award”

Women in Film, 1993


“Golden Bell Award”

Portals (Homeless Shelter), 1993


“Partner’s Award”

Oxfam America, 1992


“Earl Warren Civil Liberties Awards”

ACLU, Northern California, 1992


“Abolitionist Award”

Death Penalty Focus, 1991


“Upton Sinclair Award”

Liberty Hill Foundation, 1983

“The Christopher Award”

Gay Rights, 1976

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