Sharon Sayles Belton, vice president of Partnerships and Alliances at Thomson Reuters, was honored in Minnesota Lawyer’s 2020 Attorneys of the Year ceremony yesterday.

She was recognized for her outstanding service to the profession as part of an annual event – held virtually this year – that honors attorneys for their work in procuring a successful result in an important case or business transaction, leadership in professional associations, participating in newsworthy events in the legal community, performing significant public services or excellence in providing in-house legal services.

Sayles Belton’s recognition highlights her work to champion rebuild efforts in the Minneapolis and St. Paul neighborhoods hardest hit by the civil unrest following the tragic death of George Floyd. Thomson Reuters is among the local companies supporting rebuilding efforts – including a $1 million investment to help rebuild in North Minneapolis, the Lake Street area and the University Avenue corridor in St. Paul – and Sayles Belton’s leadership is central to the company’s initiatives.

Part of the company’s support included doubling the volunteer hours for employees in 2020 and awarding grants to organizations working to end racism and social injustices in these three neighborhoods. Sayles Belton helped lead the Thomson Reuters team responsible for reviewing applications and administering the funds.

Sayles Belton’s leadership also included serving as the keynote speaker for a National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum panel in August, sharing her perspective on anti-bias policing training. She drew from her experience as the mayor of Minneapolis from 1994 to 2002 and her earlier roles serving on the Minneapolis City Council and working for the Minnesota Department of Corrections both as a parole officer and as the assistant director of the state program for victims of sexual assault.

In addition, Sayles Belton has been involved with a team of Thomson Reuters employees volunteering to help the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives promote its mission of equity in the administration of justice and stronger relationships between law enforcement and communities.

“Sharon’s commitment to the community throughout her career has been profound, and we are especially proud of her work last year,” said Paul Fischer, interim president for the Legal Professionals business of Thomson Reuters. “Sharon’s leadership in fighting systemic racism and her work to help rebuild neighborhoods following the death of George Floyd while in police custody, were important to our community and to us at Thomson Reuters.”

“I’m honored by Minnesota Lawyer’s recognition and grateful for the awareness it brings to continuing efforts to help heal our community,” Sayles Belton said. “I extend my sincere thanks to everyone who has supported the rebuilding efforts and contributed to organizations working to end racism and social injustices. We still have a long road ahead of us, but I’m proud of Thomson Reuters and my colleagues for their commitment to helping make our communities stronger.”

Read more about Sayles Belton’s work and her award in Minnesota Lawyer.