Pro Bono Calendar
Lawyers Making a Difference
Click here for the PBA's Pennsylvania Bar News column titled “Lawyers Making a Difference” that highlights Pennsylvania attorneys who make a difference in their communities by providing extraordinary pro bono service and/or other legal services in the public interest.
News from 2017
Want to Help Hurricane/Earthquake Victims?
PBA President Sharon R. López is urging support for the Puerto Rican Bar Association’s Hurricane Maria relief effort, as well as earthquake relief efforts in Mexico. Read the letter. The Hurricane Maria Emergency Legal Aid Fund of the Fundación Fondo de Acceso a la Justicia of Puerto Rico is also requesting donations. Pennsylvania lawyers who are willing to provide legal research or assistance with federal/administrative law questions to Hurricane Maria victims are encouraged to complete the ABA Disaster Legal Service Volunteer Attorney Intake Form. López is also encouraging contributions to legal aid organizations in Texas and Louisiana for Hurricane Harvey relief. Read the letter.
PLAN Recognizes Work in Support of Pro Bono with Excellence Awards, March 28, 2017
The Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network (PLAN) honored the recipients of the 2017 PLAN Excellence Awards on March 28 at the annual awards dinner in Harrisburg. The keynote speaker was Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro. Read more and view video highlights from the event.
News from 2016
Program on Navigating the Naturalization Process, Pittsburgh, Dec. 15, 2016
The Allegheny Bar Association offers a CLE program titled “The Road to U.S. Citizenship: Navigating the Naturalization Process” on Dec. 15, 1:30-3:30 p.m. in the Koppers Building Conference Center, 9th Floor, 436 Seventh Ave., Pittsburgh. This fundamental-level CLE is designed to provide volunteer attorneys with the skills needed to represent clients through the naturalization process in front of Department Homeland Security-USCIS. Program registration closes on Dec. 13. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Divorce Practice in Philadelphia, Dec. 8, 2016
Philadelphia VIP is sponsoring a free CLE training program for attorneys on this topic; location: Cozen O’Connor, One Liberty Place, 1650 Market Street, Philadelphia. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Public Interest Law Day CLE Program, Dec. 8, 2016
The Delivery of Legal Services Committee of the Philadelphia Bar Association holds its annual Public Interest Law Day CLE Program; location: Montgomery, McCracken, Walker & Rhoads LLP, 123 South Broad St., Philadelphia. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Public Interest Section Annual Awards Ceremony and Reception, Dec. 8, 2016
Location: DoubleTree Hotel by Hilton Philadelphia, 237 S. Broad St., Philadelphia. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Driver’s License Restoration Intake Clinic, Dec. 1, 2016
The Dauphin County Bar Association’s (DCBA) Pro Bono Expungement Clinics served as a model for a Pro Bono Driver’s License Restoration Intake Clinic led by DCBA Board President Edward F. Spreha Jr. on Dec. 1, 2016. Spreha led a free one-hour CLE for attorneys willing to assist with the intake clinic or represent clients. After a brief overview with the 47 attendees, pro bono attorneys met with applicants one-on-one to review possible options. MidPenn Legal Services is reviewing the intake information and will assign pro bono attorneys to participants who have legal options. For more information, contact DCBA Public Services Coordinator Sandy Ballard (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Treatment-Courts Event in Pittsburgh, Nov. 17, 2016
The University of Pittsburgh School of Law will host Problem-Solving Justice: Treatment Courts in Pennsylvania, on Nov. 17 starting at 7 p.m. at the The University Club, 123 University Place, Pittsburgh. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Philadelphia Bar Association Young Lawyers Division Free Expungement/Sealing Clinic,
Nov. 12, 2016
The Young Lawyers Division of the Philadelphia Bar Association is seeking attorneys and law students to volunteer to work at an Expungement and Sealing Clinic at six different locations in Philadelphia on Nov. 16. Get more information on the Philadelphia Bar Association website.
Volunteers Needed to Defend Asian American Voting Rights and Monitor Voting, Nov. 8, 2016
The Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund AALDEF) is seeking volunteers to defend Asian American voting rights by monitoring the elections and surveying voters on Election Day, Nov. 8. Get more information at www.paprobono.net/civillaw/news/article.619400-Volunteers_Needed_to_Defend_Asian_American_Voting_Rights_and_Monitor_Voting.
'Helping Domestic Violence Victims Obtain Protection Orders' Program in Pittsburgh, Nov. 4, 2016
Neighborhood Legal Services Association will be holding its Fall 2016 Seminar titled “Helping Domestic Violence Victims Obtain Protection Orders” on Nov. 4, 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., with registration beginning at 8:30 a.m. The event will be hosted by Dickie, McCamey & Chilcote PC, Two PPG Place, Pittsburgh. CLE CREDITS: 3 substantive credits, 1 ethics credit. REGISTRATION FEE: No registration fee for attorneys or paralegals volunteering to take PFA referrals; $150 for non-volunteers; $500 for non-volunteers who do not want CLE credit. PRESENTERS: Lorraine Bittner, Esq., legal director, Women's Center; Shelter Beth Keenan, Esq., director, PFA Division, Family Court, Allegheny County; Sabrina Korbel, Esq., staff attorney, Women's Center and Shelter. The course has been approved for the listed CLE credits by the Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education Board. Dickie, McCamey is the CLE provider. For more information about the seminar, contact Mary Ann Troper-Malley at 412-586-6134. Space is limited Please make sure to bring photo ID with you to the CLE, as this seminar is being held in a secure building and photo ID may be required for admittance to the building.
CLS at 50: Justice Through the Decades, Nov. 3, 2016
Community Legal Services of Philadelphia will be hosting; location: Top of the Tower, 1717 Arch Street, Philadelphia. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Boo! at bahdeebahdu, Oct. 28, 2016
AIDS Law Project's Annual Halloween Party 3rd Annual Boo! at bahdeebahdu: Celebrities Edition; the two-part event at bahdeebahdu (1522 N American Street) features a catered dinner with fine wine and live performances, followed by a dance party. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Disability Advocates Honored with Annual Awards, Oct. 27, 2016
According to a recent report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of every five Americans (roughly 53 million persons) lives with a disability. The need for advocates is large. Each year at their Fall Celebration, the Legal Clinic for the Disabled (LCD) recognizes individuals and organizations that work and advocate on behalf of the disabled community in Philadelphia. The Special Recognition Award is given to a person nominated by LCD's Board of Directors who has shown outstanding commitment to the disability community and to LCD. This year's recipient is Frank M. McClellan, JD, LLM. The White Hat Award recognizes individuals and organizations that have done outstanding work for LCD and its clients. This year the law firm of Duane Morris LLP and Jeffrey S. Lichtman, Esq., are being recognized for their service with the White Hat Awards. Get more information about the awards and the awards recipients on the LCD website.
Lackawanna Pro Bono Honors at Fundraising Gala, Oct. 27, 2016
Susan S. Belin, the Children's Advocacy Center of Northeastern Pennsylvania and lawyers Melinda C. Ghilardi and Sidney J. Prejean will be honored with the Attorney Robert W. Munley Distinguished Service Award during Lackawanna Pro Bono's eighth annual Fundraising Gala, to be held Oct. 27, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Scranton Cultural Center. Shown below are Sylvia Hahn, executive director of Lackawanna Pro Bono; Mary Ann LaPorta, executive director of the Children's Advocacy Center of Northeastern Pennsylvania; Munley; Belin; Ghilardi; and Prejean. Read the press release.
Legal Clinic for the Disabled 13th Annual Fall Celebration, Oct. 27, 2016
Location: Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA), 118-128 N. Broad Street, Philadelphia. This annual fundraiser helps LCD continue the work they do by providing free legal representation to low-income people with physical disabilities in the Philadelphia region to help them overcome legal obstacles that would otherwise affect their independence, health or quality of life. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Criminal Record Relief: Expungement and Limited Access (Doylestown), Oct. 26, 2016
Legal Aid of Southeastern PA and the Bucks County Bar Association will be presenting a CLE program entitled Criminal Record Relief at the Bucks County Bar Association. This one-credit CLE will cover both expungement law and procedure and the state’s new limited-access law coming into effect in November. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
'How to Handle a Child Abuse Case' Program in Philadelphia, Oct. 26, 2016
The Support Center for Child Advocates and Pennsylvania Bar Institute will be holding a program titled “How to Handle a Child Abuse Case” on Oct. 26, 9 a.m.- 4:30 p.m., at the PBI CLE Conference Center in Philadelphia. Get more information.
Friends of Farmworkers Fall 2016 Fundraiser, Oct. 25, 2016
Location: Tequilas Restaurant, Philadelphia. For information about sponsorship opportunities, please visit www.friendsfw.org/support-our-work/fall-2016-fundraiser/2016-event-sponsorship/. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Raise a Glass to Justice Fundraiser Benefits North Penn Legal Services, Oct. 24, 2016
North Penn Legal Services will be holding its popular Raise a Glass to Justice fundraiser on Oct. 24, 6-9 p.m. at the Top Cut Steak House, Center Valley. Get details about the event on the PAprobono.net website.
31st Annual Mary Philbrook Public Interest Awards, Oct. 20, 2016
Location: Rutgers University-Camden in the Campus Center Multi-Purpose Room. Sponsored by the Women’s Law Caucus, the Association for Public Interest Law, the Rutgers Law–Camden Alumni Association, and the Camden County Bar Association, the Mary Philbrook Public Interest Award celebration is a 31-year tradition at Rutgers Law School's Camden location. This year's honoree is Michael Taub, Esq., director, Homeless Advocacy Project’s Veterans Project, the only legal assistance program in Philadelphia that specifically targets homeless veterans. In addition, Rutgers Law student and veteran Joshua Piccoli, who died last year, will be memorialized. Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Shepherds of Peace Dinner & Awards, Oct. 19, 2016
Location: Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust St., Philadelphia. Each year, in conjunction with international Conflict Resolution Day, Good Shepherd Mediation Program honors several individuals who have been instrumental in encouraging peace and social justice in Philadelphia and names them "Shepherds of Peace." Get more information on the PAProbono.net website.
Centre County Bench/Bar Day, Oct. 14, 2016
The Centre County Bar Association's Bench/Bar Day program is designed as a full-day CLE program. David K. Trevaskis, PBA pro bono coordinator, and Ellen Freedman, PBA law practice management coordinator, will speak at the event, to be held at the Nittany Lion Inn at Penn State University. Get more information.
Equal Justice America Campaign Puts Law Students to Work on Behalf of the Poor in Pennsylvania, Oct. 3, 2016
For more than two decades, Equal Justice America (EJA) Fellowships have provided an invaluable experience for law students to work at legal aid organizations that protect battered women, abused and neglected children, veterans, the elderly, immigrants, individuals with disabilities and other low-income Americans, putting law students and lawyers to work for legal aid programs throughout the country. Since 2009, when EJA launched its Pennsylvanians for Equal Justice campaign, EJA has sponsored more than 120 law student fellowships in the commonwealth, this year awarding 13 summer fellowships to law students working in Pennsylvania. The names of the fellows and the organizations they worked with are listed below. Read the students' testimonials about the program. Read testimonials from the legal services programs. And for more information, visit the EJA website, www.EqualJusticeAmerica.org.
* Shahirah Brown, Sarah Estabrook, Mary Jones, Nora Kenty and Eliza Novick-Smith worked at Community Legal Services of Philadelphia.
* Ian Charlton worked in the Housing Unit at Philadelphia Legal Assistance.
* Tracy Corbett worked in the Public Benefits Unit at Philadelphia Legal Assistance.
* Amelia Donovan and Elizabeth Flanagan worked at the Legal Clinic for the Disabled in Philadelphia.
* Kristi Heidel worked in the Juvenile Court Project of the Allegheny County Bar Foundation in Pittsburgh.
* Tracie Johnson worked at the Juvenile Law Center in Philadelphia.
* Melissa McClure worked in the Family Law Unit at Philadelphia Legal Assistance.
* Marian Miawad worked at the American Friends Service Committee in Philadelphia.
Public-Education Campaign on Laws Limiting Access to Criminal Records, October 2016
The PBA and 34 county bar associations are conducting a statewide public-information campaign titled “Understanding Expungement and Limited Access to Criminal Records.” The campaign focuses on existing expungement laws and a new state law taking effect Nov. 14. The new law limits access to some information about criminal histories, removing barriers to employment, housing and education for individuals who have completed their punishment and have had no arrests or prosecutions for at least 10 years. The campaign is funded by the PBA and a grant from the Pennsylvania Bar Insurance and Trust Fund. Read the media release. Get more information. Watch video of the news conferencelaunching the campaign on the PBA YouTube Channel. Watch the campaign TV ad. The participating local bar associations participating in the campaign include Adams County Bar Association, Beaver County Bar Association, Berks County Bar Association, Blair County Bar Association, Butler County Bar Association, Carbon County Bar Association, Centre County Bar Association, Chester County Bar Association, Clearfield County Bar Association, Columbia/Montour Bar Association, Cumberland County Bar Association, Dauphin County Bar Association, Delaware County Bar Association, Erie County Bar Association, Fayette County Bar Association, Franklin County Bar Association, Huntingdon County Bar Association, Lackawanna Bar Association, Lancaster Bar Association, Lawrence County Bar Association, Lebanon County Bar Association, Bar Association of Lehigh County, Lycoming Law Association, Mercer County Bar Association, Monroe County Bar Association, Montgomery Bar Association, Northampton County Bar Association, Philadelphia Bar Association, Venango County Bar Association, Washington County Bar Association, Wayne County Bar Association, Westmoreland Bar Association, Wilkes-Barre Law and Library Association and York County Bar Association.
Algeo Receives ABA Jean Crowe Award, Aug. 6, 2016
Bucks County lawyer Judith A. Algeo has received the Jean Crowe Pro Bono Award from the American Bar Association Family Law Section. The award presentation was made at the section's Annual Meeting in San Francisco, Calif., on Aug. 6. Given annually to a lawyer who has made significant contributions to family-law clients on a pro bono basis in their community, the award was presented to Algeo in recognition of her dedication to representing the underprivileged in Bucks County. Read more about the award.
IOLTA Subcommittee Foreclosure Prevention and Community Redevelopment Study, August 2016
The attached report and recommended distribution of surplus funds is from a 2014 settlement agreement between the U.S. Department of Justice and Bank of America. The report was adopted by a subcommittee of the Pennsylvania Interest on Lawyers' Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Board on Aug. 25, 2016, adopted by the board on Sept. 14, 2016, and approved for dissemination by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Sept. 30. Grant applications for the funds will be made available in mid-November when IOLTA's regular, annual grant application cycle opens. Additional details regarding the RFPs for the surplus funds will be provided by IOLTA.
Philadelphia VIP Seeks Volunteer Lawyers for Tenants Facing Eviction, August 2016
The Philadelphia Volunteers for the Indigent Program (VIP) is seeking volunteer lawyers to be trained to represent tenants facing eviction. Read more about the need and get program and contact information here.
Wolman Honored with Pro Bono Award, July 13, 2016
The PBA and Lancaster Bar Association (LBA) joined with MidPenn Legal Services to honor Lancaster attorney James D. Wolman for his pro bono work at a special luncheon on July 13, 2016. Wolman has been active in the LBA's Volunteer Attorney Program since 1988. He regularly accepts pro bono referrals across many areas of family law-support, custody and protection-from-abuse and takes an average of four pro bono cases per year. Recently, as community resources to provide free legal representation to victims of domestic violence in protection-from-abuse proceedings have diminished, Wolman's pro bono service has become increasingly concentrated in that area. MidPenn staff note that "He brings the wisdom of a seasoned family law practitioner and an understanding of the complex dynamics of domestic violence to these cases." Wolman was recognized by the LBA in 2005 for his commitment to pro bono service. In the decade since receiving that recognition, he has continued to demonstrate a true commitment to assisting individuals unable to afford counsel. Domestic violence destabilizes families and can impact housing, employment and the safety, stability and emotional health of children. Often, a protection-from-abuse order is the first step in restoring order and stability to the life of a family turned upside down by violence in the home. Wolman's pro bono assistance helps individuals and families obtain this critical fresh start. At a time when both civil legal aid resources and volunteer attorney participation are in decline, Wolman's service is more valuable than ever to the community. When advised that he was awarded the 2015 PBA Pro Bono Award, Wolman was surprised and humbled that he was being singled out for recognition. To him, pro bono work integrates "seamlessly" with the rest of his practice. In his view, pro bono service is just a natural part of his work as a lawyer. Shown below at the luncheon are (from left) LBA President Terry Warco; Sharon Wolman; James Wolman; PBA Pro Bono Coordinator David Trevaskis; Laurie Baughman, MidPenn deputy director for legal advocacy and managing attorney of the Lancaster MidPenn office; Angely Rodriguez, MidPenn Volunteer Attorney Program coordinator; MidPenn board member Rich Low; and James Kearney, MidPenn director of development.
Pittsburgh Lawyer McCarthy Receives 2016 PBA Ernico Award, June 29, 2016
Carol Mills McCarthy, a partner with the Pittsburgh-based McCarthy McDonald Schulberg & Joy and a past president of the Neighborhood Legal Services Association (NLSA) board, was honored by the PBA with a Jeffrey A. Ernico Award on June 29, in recognition of her exceptional pro bono advocacy efforts. The award celebrates the pro bono accomplishments of Harrisburg attorney Jeffrey A. Ernico and his long-standing commitment to equal justice. It is an occasional award of the PBA Legal Services to the Public Committee, given to honor those whose efforts have “resulted in significant improvement in the provision of legal services to the neediest among us.” McCarthy was recognized for her extraordinary volunteerism benefitting the clients of NLSA and the Allegheny County Bar Association's Pro Bono Center. Read the NLSA news release. Read more about the Ernico Award and past winners. Shown below, McCarthy receives the award from David K. Trevaskis, PBA pro bono coordinator, left, and Robert Racunas, NLSA executive director.
Trial Run 5K Run/Walk, Chester County, June 25, 2016
The 12th Annual Trial Run 5K Run/Walk will be held on June 25 in Downingtown, Pa., at the beautiful Struble Trail. Pre-registration begins at 7:30 a.m. with the run/walk to begin at 8 a.m. For more information and to register, go to http://www.trialrun5k.com/.
Pro-Bono Name Change Project Training, Pittsburgh, June 10, 2016
The Pro Bono Name Change Project of the Allegheny County Bar Association will be holding a name-change training on June 10, 10-11 a.m. at the Koppers Building Conference Center, Pittsburgh. For many transgender people, securing a legal name change is an important step toward making their legal identities match their lived experience. But securing a legal name change can be challenging and involve interaction with the court system, a foreign experience for many people. The Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF) pro bono Name Change Project provides transgender individuals with adequate legal representation, ensuring they can successfully complete the process and move forward with their lives. At this event, the pro bono Name Change Project - recipient of the 2015 New Initiative Award at the Allegheny County bar Association Pro Bono Achievement Awards - is offering training to all Allegheny County attorneys interested in providing a valuable service to Pittsburgh's transgender community. Get more information (linked to http://www.paprobono.net/civillaw/calendar/event.603156-ProBono_Name_Change_Project_Training_Pittsburgh) on the PA probono.net website or contact Barb Griffin at the ACBA, email@example.com.
Philadelphia Bar Association 5K Run/Walk, May 15, 2016
The 37th Annual Philadelphia Bar Association 5K Run/Walk will be held on May 15, beginning at Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park. This event attracts more than 1,300 runners and walkers of all ages each year and is one of the oldest and most respected events of its kind in the City of Philadelphia. For an application, contact Michael Berkowitz at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-567-2010, ext. 132. Get more information.
Dickie McCamey Announces Associate Mazzarese as 2016 Pro Bono Award Winner, May 4, 2016
The law firm of Dickie McCamey & Chilcote PC has announced that Amee L. Mazzarese is the 2016 recipient of the firm's David B. Fawcett Pro Bono Service Award. Ms. Mazzarese, an associate with the firm, is recognized for giving her time to those in need — a tradition and attribute of the award's namesake, David B. Fawcett. Shown above along with Ms. Mazzarese are the firm's five other associates who were finalists for the award, from left, Paul A. Roman Jr., Ashley E. Sharek, Ms. Mazzarese, Genevieve A. Pecharka, Maureen K. Cosgrove and Jason L. Ott. Read more about the award on the firm's website.
'Serving Those Who Served' Seminar, April 29, 2016
Sponsored by Penn State Fayette, the Fayette County Bar Association and the Westmoreland Bar Association, a seminar titled “Serving Those Who Served: Veteran Benefits, Programs and Legal Issues” is being held at Penn State Fayette on April 29. Get more information about the event.
'Pro Bono E-News' of April 26, 2016
Get the latest updates in the Spring 2016 issue of the "PBA Pro Bono E-News."
U.S. Sen. Casey Co-Hosts Public Forum on IRS Plans to Reduce Taxpayer Services, April 8, 2016
U.S. Senator Robert P. Casey Jr. and National Taxpayer Advocate Nina A. Olson co-host a forum on plans announced by the Internal Revenue Service to reduce telephone and face-to-face services to taxpayers. The public forum will be held in the Harrisburg University Auditorium, Harrisburg, on April 8, with Robert B. Hamilton, managing attorney of MidPenn Legal Services' Low Income Taxpayer Clinic, a panelist at the event. Get more information.
York County Expungement Clinic, April 4, 2016
An expungement informational clinic co-sponsored by the York County Bar Association will be held at the Martin Library in York, Pa., on April 4. Read more in the event flier, available in English and Spanish.
Youth Court at Villanova University, March 18, 2016
Youth Court, supported by the PBA as an alternative to the school-to-prison pipeline, was featured on March 18 at Villanova University. The university's Center for Peace and Justice Education, in conjunction with the Augustinian Peace and Justice Office, hosted the one-day forum on how the principles of restorative justice can help pave the way to resolving disputes and healing broken relationships throughout society. University of Pennsylvania law students who have worked all year with PBA partner EducationWorks and its Youth Court Support Center, with YCSC head Gregg Volz, helped train the Beeber Middle School Youth Court featured in these photos. The students conducted a mock hearing as part of the Restorative Justice Coalition Conference. The Strawberry Mansion High School Youth Court, trained through a partnership with the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, also made a presentation and were equally impressive in presenting the Youth Court model.
PLAN Excellence Awards Honor Supporters of Pro Bono, March 15, 2016
The Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network (PLAN) honored the recipients of the 2016 PLAN Excellence Awards at its annual awards banquet at the Hilton Harrisburg, March 15. Read more.
Philadelphia VIP Gala, March 12, 2016
Philadelphia VIP, the hub of pro bono legal services for low-income clients in Philadelphia, hosted its 35th Anniversary Gala on March 12. With more than 475 supporters and sponsors on hand for the sold-out event, it helped to raise more than $500,000 to provide free legal assistance to low-income clients with critical legal needs through the services of pro bono attorneys. Read more.
ACBF Seeks Nominations for Red Tie Gala Awards to Be Presented March 12, 2016
The Allegheny County Bar Foundation is seeking nominations for two special awards to be presented at the ACBF's 35th Anniversary Red Tie Gala on March 12, 2016. The Heart of Justice Award will be presented to an attorney who has consistently adhered to the highest principles and traditions of the legal profession, particularly service to the public. This award recognizes an attorney who has an unwavering passion for community service and displays outstanding character and integrity. The recipient must be a member of the Allegheny County Bar Association who has been actively engaged in the practice of law for many years, during which substantial time has been dedicated toward service to the public. The ACBF Young Professional Award of Excellence celebrates the initiative and outstanding contributions of a young lawyer to the legal profession and the community. The award shall be presented to an individual who has demonstrated exceptional commitment to pro bono work and community service. For criteria and nomination forms, please visit http://acbfgala.swellgives.com/awards.
17th Annual Law Week Event Features Documentary on Veterans, Feb. 29, 2016
The 17th Annual Law Week at the Fox Rothschild Center for Law and Society of the Community College of Philadelphia, co-sponsored by the PBA Pro Bono Office, featured the premiere of the documentary titled “Our Way Home: Transitioning from the Front Lines to the Homefront” on Feb. 29.
It shows the homecoming stories of U.S. veterans from World War II to the present. Get more information on the documentary at www.ourwayhomeforvets.org. The film showing was followed by a panel discussion moderated by PBA Military and Veterans Committee Co-Chair Wesley R. Payne IV, shown above at far left, an army veteran and a partner at the White and Williams LLP law firm in Philadelphia. Issues addressed by the film and the panel included, “How has the culture changed the way we view what was traditionally known as ‘shell shock,' the serious disorder that effects 7.7 million Americans every day?"; "How can society help ease the transitions of our veterans back into home life?”; and, most importantly, "Where can veterans with post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD) get help?” Panelists included Alexis Werner, second from right in the photo, who started the nonprofit Seeds of Hope as a high school student struggling to understand the issues faced by her stepfather on his return from Afghanistan. The documentary is her third project in her personal effort to find her own way home. Bob McMahon, a Vietnam veteran and co-founder and chairman of the Veterans National Education Program, and Eric R. Cohen, a clinician who specializes in PTSD and vets, rounded out the panel. Co-sponsored by the Veteran's Center of the Community College of Philadelphia and the PBA Military and Veterans' Affairs Committee, the session highlighted the importance of veterans sharing and others listening to their stories of returning home. With 22 vets committing suicide every day, the documentary and panel were both powerful reminders of the very difficult transition many of our veterans face.
York County Pro Bono Check Presentation to MidPenn Legal Services, Jan. 12, 2016
York pro bono guru Lawrence V. Young announces the presentation of a big check (both in size and amount, $93,360) to MidPenn Legal Services at the Jan. 12 county bar dinner. Holding the check, from left, are Carrie Bowmaster, MPLS lawyer and head of the MPLS York office, and Victoria Connor, York County Bar Association CEO.
Miskey Honored at York Bar Dinner, Jan. 12, 2016
Howard Miskey, former MidPenn Legal Services director of advocacy and part-time managing attorney for the MPLS York office, was honored at the Jan. 12 county bar dinner with the 2015 Civil Legal Aid Attorney of the Year Award. The award recognizes his efforts to help forge the great partnership between the York County Bar Association and York County Bar Foundation and MPLS. Jointly nominated by those two bar entities, Miskey's legacy is captured by the words of his former boss at MPLS, Rhodia Thomas: “[Howard] always put clients and client service first while providing advocates with the support they needed to enable them to deliver the highest quality of service.” In the photo PBA President William H. Pugh V, right, and PBA Pro Bono Coordinator David Trevaskis, left, present the award to Carrie Bowmaster, head of the MPLS York office. Read about this and other awards made during the event.
Menges Receives 2015 Pro Bono Award, Jan. 12, 2016
Chris Menges (now Judge Menges) received a 2015 PBA Pro Bono Award by joint nomination of the York County Bar Association and MidPenn Legal Services, reflecting the partnership of private practice attorneys, local bars and local legal aid programs that remains the core model for pro bono service. Menges' nominators said this about him: “Chris has handled pro bono referrals for years and he has been willing to accept custody cases at all stages and participates in both the divorce and custody pro se clinics. In addition, he also encourages the attorneys in his office to accept pro bono referrals resulting in the firm having 100 percent participation. His willingness to help has resulted in clients obtaining representation when they otherwise would have had to represent themselves.” In the photo, PBA President William H. Pugh V, right, and PBA Pro Bono Coordinator David Trevaskis, left, present the award to Judge Menges.
Judge Linebaugh Receives Castille Award, Jan. 12, 2016
York County Court of Common Pleas President Judge Stephen P. Linebaugh was celebrated with the 2015 Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille Award for his work establishing and institutionalizing the York County Court Self-Help Center. Megan Dietz, director, York County Court Self-Help Law Resource Center, shared why Judge Linebaugh's work here was so significant: “The Court Self-Help Center offers another option for those who are unable to afford an attorney, and we strive to make the self-represented litigant's experience navigating the legal system a little easier. Providing access to the courts to all persons is the right thing to do, and the Court Self-Help Center serves the litigant as well as the court by providing means for clearer, more efficient filings. People fill the center on a daily basis; the number of visitors finding assistance in the center is testament alone to the need for such a resource.” In the photo, PBA President William H. Pugh V, right, and PBA Pro Bono Coordinator David Trevaskis, left, present the award to Judge Linebaugh.
Ernico Award Presented to York County's Lawrence V. Young, Jan. 12, 2016
Lawrence V. Young was honored with the Jeffrey A. Ernico Award. The award celebrates the pro bono accomplishments of Harrisburg attorney Jeffrey A. Ernico and his long-standing commitment to equal justice and serving those who had nowhere else to turn. The award is an occasional award of the PBA Legal Services to the Public Committee, given to such individuals and groups as the committee, from time to time, determines have provided unique service that has resulted in significant improvement in the provision of legal services to the neediest among us. Larry has spent a lifetime doing just that. As it reads on the plaque, “A Champion of Access to Justice, Larry Young has provided pro bono service and leadership in York County and beyond. His example and his leadership in the field is greatly appreciated.” In the photo, PBA President William H. Pugh V, right, and PBA Pro Bono Coordinator David Trevaskis, left, present the award to Young.
PAProbono.net is the Online Resource for All Things Pro Bono
Looking for an opportunity to support the public good? Searching for resources to help serve a pro bono client? Check out the PAProbono.net Web site, an online resource supported by the PBA, local bar associations, pro bono referral programs, legal aid programs and private law firms. The site features a Pro Bono Opportunities Guide that allows lawyers to select their volunteer preferences, the Pennsylvania Civil Law Practice Area, an events calendar and other information to educate and inspire lawyers interested in increasing access to justice.
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