By Sierra Blanchard-Hodge
Katie Legomsky has a busy day job. Since 2010, she’s been an attorney in the General Counsel’s Office of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and she’s currently on a one-year detail as a trial attorney at the DOJ Civil Rights Division, Housing and Civil Enforcement Section.
But it’s the work she does during her spare time that earned her our 2015 Government Pro Bono Award. Since 2011, Katie has volunteered for the DC Volunteer Lawyers Project, serving as a pro bono litigator and a mentor for junior volunteers.
During her time with DCVLP, Katie has litigated 4 civil cases on behalf of domestic-violence victims, helping each client obtain a civil-protection order. These have been difficult, complex cases, including cases involving issues of child safety and custody, property damage, aggravated assault, and even cyberstalking. At the same time, Katie has mentored junior volunteer attorneys at DCVLP, putting them in a position to represent clients of their own. Katie has volunteered for other organizations as well, including Bread for the City and the Family Court Self-Help Center at D.C. Superior Court.
Katie’s commitment to pro bono and public service dates back to her time in law school. While attending Harvard Law, she was a volunteer “Big Sister” at the Big Brothers Big Sister project and a student attorney for the Prison Legal Assistance Project. She also participated in the Criminal Justice Institute (Harvard’s criminal-defense clinic) and the trauma and special-education clinic. She was recognized at her law-school graduation for performing 1,000 hours (!) of pro bono service.
Katie lives and breathes public service, and we’re delighted to recognize her work with our 2015 Government Pro Bono Award.