In partnership with county bar associations, the PBA held its fifth annual statewide Law Day effort titled “A Constitution for Everyone…Everyday.” Beginning May 1 with kick-off events throughout the state and continuing through May 30, the Law Day celebration brought together over 1,000 judges, lawyers and schools to help children learn about the law and our country’s strength and history.
The official statewide kick-off ceremony was held on May 7 with a historic Law Day Luncheon to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court in Brown v. Board of Education. Oliver Brown’s daughters, Linda Brown Thompson and Cheryl Brown Henderson were the luncheon’s featured speakers and chronicled the history of their family’s participation in the court battle and its impact on education and the civil rights movement. This luncheon brought together all members of the community, including law firms, local bar associations, corporations, schools and students, and community, religious and education organizations, including the local chapter of the NAACP. The luncheon raised over $40,000; the proceeds of which were given to the Brown Foundation for Educational Equity, Excellence and Research and the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation.
“This anniversary gives us a special opportunity to emphasize freedom, equality and justice for all, which are the fundamental principles upon which our country was founded,” said then-PBA President Thomas M. Golden. “This constitutional milestone can serve to inspire lawyers, teachers and students to come together to discuss the complex issues facing today’s society such as diversity, equal rights and personal privacy.”
Following the kick-off, lawyers and judges visited schools throughout the month of May. The PBA developed the Law Day 2004 K-12 Lesson Plan Guide to help educators, judges and lawyers bring the law to life for students. The guide includes law-related lesson plans for all grade levels, ready-to-copy handouts and useful informational resources for educators. In addition, the guide helps educators prepare for the Proposed State Academic Standards for Civics and Government by correlating each lesson plan to the appropriate academic standards it satisfies.
Throughout the month of May, lawyers and judges visited classrooms across the commonwealth to talk with students about the law. Many local and county bar associations hosted Law Day festivities, including courthouse tours and mock trials for students, Law Day luncheons and judicial visits.
Law Day is funded in part in Pennsylvania by the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation.
The PBA would like to thank the following individuals and organizations for helping to make Law Day 2004 possible:
Art Communication Systems Inc.
Cameron County Bar Association
Centre County Bar Association
Chester County Bar Association
Clearfield County Bar Association
Samuel Cooper, Esq.
Crawford County Bar Association
DPK & Associates Inc.
Dauphin County Bar Association
Downey Elementary School
Elk County Bar Association
Greene County Bar Association
*Michelle Farley, Esq.
Harrisburg City Council
Harrisburg High School ROTC
Holston & Crisci
*Donald Imler, Hollidaysburg Area Senior School
*Susan Kenny, Monroe County Bar Association
*Judge Thomas King Kistler
*Barbara Kittrell, Berks County Bar Association
*Kathleen Luft, principal, Schaull Elementary School
*Jon Malsnee, Esq.
*Jacqueline Martinez, Esq.
Mercer County Bar Association
*Hon. Linda Wallach Miller, Law-Related Education Committee Co-chair
Monroe County Bar Association
Greater Harrisburg Area NAACP, Branch 2263
*Craig B. Neely, Esq.
Northumberland County Bar Association
Pennsylvania Cable Network
Pennsylvania State Education Association
Pepper Hamilton LLP
Philadelphia Bar Association
Potter County Bar Association
Saul Ewing LLP
*Judge Todd Seelig, Esq., PBA Young Lawyers Division Chair
*Grace Schuyler, Esq.
Schuylkill County Bar Association
*Sandra Brydon Smith, Erie County Bar Association
Somerset County Bar Association
*Andrew F. Susko, Esq.
*Louis N. Teti, Esq., Law-Related Education Committee Co-chair
Venango County Bar Association
Washington County Bar Association
Westmoreland Bar Association
Wilkes-Barre Law & Library Association
* Member of the PBA Law-Related Education Committee