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2016 Presidents Award For Public Service: Kathryn Doan

2016 Presidents Award for Public Service: Kathryn Doan

By Tanya Senanayake With immigrants and vulnerable communities facing unique threats, it's as important as ever to stay focused on equality and access to justice. And at times like these we need more people like CAIR Coalition's Kathryn Doan—winner of our 2016 Presidents Award for Public Service. Kathy has served immigrants for more than twenty years, and has fought hard to get justice for members of underrepresented communities. (more…)
2016 Government Pro Bono Award: Katrina Rouse

2016 Government Pro Bono Award: Katrina Rouse

By Amy Senier Katrina Rouse, is a Trial Attorney at the Department of Justice Antitrust Division and the winner of our 2016 Government Pro Bono Award. It's easy to see why: She has an uncommon commitment to pro bono work. Since she learned about DOJ’s Pro Bono Program when joining the government in 2011, she has handled six pro bono cases from the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center’s Advocacy & Justice Clinic, drafted two wills through the D.C. Bar-Bread for the City Pro Bono Wills Clinic, and volunteered several times at the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center's Advice & Referral Clinic. Katrina makes a point of taking on at least one pro bono case per year. And “if that case gets dismissed quickly, I take another. It is my personal commitment to being a good resident of the city.” (more…)
2016 Legal Services Award: Thomas “Skip” Mark

2016 Legal Services Award: Thomas “Skip” Mark

By Jim Rubin Thomas “Skip” Mark, winner of our 2016 Legal Services Award, has served many and achieved much as a managing attorney at the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center. Indeed, he's spent his entire career helping others and expanding access to justice. (more…)
2016 Law Firm Award: Dechert

2016 Law Firm Award: Dechert

Dechert, winner of our 2016 Law Firm Award, encourages all of its lawyers to do public-interest work. The firm maintains 26 offices around the world, and each office follows the passions of its lawyers and pursues pro bono work that is vital to their communities. (more…)
Crossing The Border: Global Pro Bono

Crossing the Border: Global Pro Bono

By Cheryl Polydor "Think globally, act locally." The two increasingly have become one in this age of the global village and the global economy. Local lawyers and judges interested in promoting justice beyond U.S. borders now can do so without leaving home. They also can work directly in the field—whether that means traveling to rural Mexico or North Darfur, Sudan. (more…)
Pro Bono Week Recap: Serving On Nonprofit Boards

Pro Bono Week Recap: Serving on Nonprofit Boards

By Erin Mee Serving on nonprofit boards can help expand access to justice and give back to the community, while at the same time providing board members an opportunity to expand their networks and build meaningful skills. So explained the speakers at Washington Council of Lawyers's DC Pro Bono Week panel discussing service on nonprofit boards. (more…)
Pro Bono Week Recap: Landlord-Tenant Branch Site Visit

Pro Bono Week Recap: Landlord-Tenant Branch Site Visit

A dozen lawyers and law students gathered at Judiciary Square on Tuesday morning, October 25 for The Housing Crisis from the Inside: A Guided Tour of D.C. Superior Court’s Landlord and Tenant Branch. This Pro Bono Week event was co-sponsored by Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia and Neighborhood Legal Services Program; the tour, led by Legal Aid's Beth Mellen Harrison, sought to educate participants about the lack of safe, affordable housing in the District and the experience of low-income tenants forced to defend themselves in eviction cases in a fast-paced, high-volume court. (more…)
Our 2016 Award Winners

Our 2016 Award Winners

Every year we give out awards to recognize lawyers and firms who provided exceptional pro bono and public-interest service. This year's Awards Ceremony will take place on December 1, and we're pleased to announce this year's winners: (more…)
Pro Bono Week Profile: Gerald Richman

Pro Bono Week Profile: Gerald Richman

By Children's Law Center When you ask Gerald Richman why he volunteers as a pro bono lawyer for Children’s Law Center, he is quick to talk about vulnerable children who need someone in their corner. “A lot of these families are walking on a tightrope,” he says. “But when you take a case, you can see immediate benefits for someone who needs help, who doesn’t have a lot of advantages in life.” (more…)
Pro Bono Week Profile: Katrina Rouse

Pro Bono Week Profile: Katrina Rouse

By Lise Adams For Katrina Rouse, public service transcends her day job. Despite her challenging career as a trial lawyer with DOJ's Antitrust Division, Katrina regularly makes time to volunteer with the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center, working with the Center's Advocacy & Justice Clinic to provide extended representation for low-income clients. This volunteer service is central to Katrina’s professional life: “I have a goal of taking on at least one case per year. If that case gets dismissed quickly, I take another. It is my personal commitment to being a good resident of the city.” Katrina first became aware of the Pro Bono Center when she started working at the Antitrust Division. Her orientation packet included a flier about pro bono opportunities for federal government lawyers. Katrina immediately contacted Laura Klein, manager of the Federal Government Pro Bono Program, and Laura encouraged Katrina to take a Pro Bono Center case. (continued…)
Pro Bono Week Profile: Will Ashworth & Shauna Kramer

Pro Bono Week Profile: Will Ashworth & Shauna Kramer

By Michael Lukens It takes a special and dedicated pro bono team to fight for a noncitizen facing deportation and exile from his family. Cases like these often combine immigration law and criminal issues and require lawyers willing and able to articulate why their client, despite past mistakes, deserves to stay in the United States. This year, Williams & Connolly's Will Ashworth and Shauna Kramer successfully made that case—and did so with poise, strength, and compassion. (more…)
Pro Bono Week Profile: Joseph Patry

Pro Bono Week Profile: Joseph Patry

By Jodi Feldman Just a few weeks ago, the Legal Aid Society recognized Joseph J. Patry, an associate at Blank Rome, with the first Making Justice Real Pro Bono Award. The award came at a special celebration recognizing Legal Aid’s Generous Associates Campaign and pro bono volunteers. (more…)
Pro Bono Week Profile: Angela Buckner

Pro Bono Week Profile: Angela Buckner

By Amy Nelson “Public service is a privilege,” says Angela Buckner, a volunteer lawyer at Whitman-Walker’s Name and Gender Change Clinic. Angela has sought out public service throughout her career, and is one of the clinic's many proud volunteers. (more…)
A Low Bono Referral Service Comes To DC

A Low Bono Referral Service Comes to DC

Two years ago, we began Looking into Low Bono, a series of events exploring ways to expand access to justice for clients of modest means. As part of that process, we examined service models from around the country, heard from other low bono experts, and learned from established initiatives in other jurisdictions. In response, attendees took action—they formed an independent working group and worked hard to bring low bono solutions to Washington, DC. (more…)
Event Series: The State Of African Americans In DC

Event Series: The State of African Americans in DC

The Georgetown University DC Public Policy Initiative and the School of Nursing & Health Studies are hosting an upcoming event series: The State of African Americans in DC. The series joins reports commissioned by the DC Commission on African-American Affairs and sponsored by Georgetown in order to focus on the condition of African Americans living in DC. (more…)
Our 2016 Mentoring Program

Our 2016 Mentoring Program

Our 2016 Mentoring Program will be starting soon, and we can’t wait to welcome this year’s mentors and mentees. Mentees are paired with an experienced lawyer mentor and meet with that mentor two to three times throughout the year. We also hold six additional mentoring events, including panels on setting career goals and succeeding as a new lawyer and happy hours with local public-interest lawyers. The combination of individual meetings and group programs provides answers to questions about life as a new lawyer and a variety of tips and perspectives that can help lawyers throughout their careers. (More…)
Now Accepting Nominations For Our 2016 Awards

Now Accepting Nominations for our 2016 Awards

Do you know a dynamic legal-services lawyer who represents low-income clients, works to improve access to justice, or thinks creatively to solve difficult legal problems? Do you know any dedicated government lawyers who also volunteer their time to organize pro bono efforts or represent low-income clients? If so, we need your nominations for our 2016 Legal Services Award and 2016 Government Pro Bono Award! Each year at our Awards Ceremony, we recognize the extraordinary work of some of the District's most dedicated public-interest and pro bono lawyers. Our 2016 Awards Ceremony will take place on Thursday, December 1 at 6:30 pm. (more…)
Justice In Aging Fellow Shana Wynn Works For District Seniors

Justice in Aging Fellow Shana Wynn Works for District Seniors

By Miranda Hines Shana Wynn, a 2015–2016 Borchard Law and Aging Fellow, may need to clone herself: She is effectively doing the work of two people, fighting on two fronts to ensure that her clients can age with dignity. She works primarily for Justice in Aging, which does policy work; two days a week, she also represents clients pro bono at the Southeast DC office of Neighborhood Legal Services Program, which serves residents of Wards 7 and 8. (more…)