Congratulations again to our inaugural AALS Pro Bono Honor Roll awardees! The Honor Roll acknowledges and highlights the exceptional work of individuals engaging in, expanding, and/or supporting their law school community in providing pro bono legal services.
We were thrilled to feature 58 law schools and nearly 140 individuals on this year’s AALS Pro Bono Honor Roll. Congratulations and thank you for your service! The complete list of honorees is available here: https://www.aals.org/awards/pro-bono/.
The Practising Law Institute (PLI) offers continuing legal education programs on a number of topics relevant to pro bono practice, such as Ethical Issues in Pro Bono Representation; Lawyering from a Trauma-Informed Perspective; Introduction to Critical Race Theory and Intersectionality; and Vulnerable Populations and Immigration Relief, just to name a few. If you work for a 501(c)(3) organization with at least one staff attorney and provide or coordinate direct pro bono service, you may qualify for PLI’s Pro Bono Privileged Membership.
With January around the corner, we approach the opportunity to gather with each other in San Diego at the AALS Annual Meeting. Whether you will be there or not, I hope you enjoy some highlights in this newsletter about the upcoming Annual Meeting, the worthy recipients of our Section awards, the service project we have planned, and details about our exciting annual meeting session.
A few virtual gatherings are also planned. Mark your calendars and save the zoom links for two upcoming education enrichment sessions detailed in this newsletter. Also included in the newsletter here is a link to join an online community conversation focused on what’s bringing you (us) hope for the new year. If you have colleagues who would enjoy any of these activities, please feel free to pass along the information and invite them to join.
Even with so many challenges in our world, we have much to be grateful for, including the service our section members and our students provide. Pro bono legal service is a key part of health, safety, and security for our communities. Evictions are avoided. Consumer debt is mitigated. Domestic violence may be prevented. Child support is paid. People find answers and sometimes find closure through pro bono service. Some of the people engaging in pro bono service through our law schools are being celebrated in the inaugural AALS Pro Bono Honor Roll. Enjoy perusing the list and consider who you will highlight for their service next year.
If you will be in San Diego, I hope you’ll come and say hello. On Thursday, find me at 11 a.m. “I Love a Clean San Diego” service project, or later in our Section’s 3 p.m. session, “Incorporating Access to Justice & Pro Bono Across the Law School Curriculum.” On Friday, find me at our Section’s 12 p.m. Awards gathering, where we’ll honor three outstanding members of our community: Russel Engler, New England Law; Stephen Rispoli, Baylor University School of Law; and Deborah Schlosberg, Berkeley School of Law.
May our whole community enjoy a safe and healthy conclusion to 2022 and a safer and healthier year ahead.
Angela F. Schultz Chair, Section on Pro Bono & Access to Justice Assistant Dean for Public Service Marquette Law School Assistant Dean for Public Service
On Monday, December 5 from 12:00-1:00 EST, the AALS Section on Pro Bono and Access to Justice will host Roger Williams University School of Law Professor Monica Teixeira de Sousa. Monica’s topic will be “The Law Professor and the Therapist: Beyond Belonging There’s a Place (and Need) for Group Solidarity among First Generation and Low-Income Students in the Law School Setting.”
Topic: “The Law Professor and the Therapist: Beyond Belonging There’s a Place (and Need) for Group Solidarity among First Generation and Low-Income Students in the Law School Setting” hosted by AALS Section on Pro Bono & Access to Justice.
Gather with members of the Section on Pro Bono & Access to Justice for a conversation facilitated by Michelle Takagishi-Almeida, Director of the Public Service Program at Southwestern Law School. The discussion will build on our March 17th gathering in “Overcoming Isolation” as well as AALS President Chemerinsky’s theme on Law Schools Making a Difference, the 2023 AALS Clinical Conference theme on Hope as a Discipline, end-of-year holidays, and New Year Resolutions. Join us! And invite a colleague to join in, too.
The AALS Pro Bono Honor Roll acknowledges and highlights the exceptional work of individuals engaging in, expanding, and/or supporting their law school community in providing pro bono legal services.
In its inaugural year, 58 law schools submitted nearly 140 individuals for inclusion on the AALS Pro Bono Honor Roll. Congratulations and thank you for your service. The complete list of honorees is available, here: https://www.aals.org/awards/pro-bono/.
Please mark your calendar for our section’s AALS conference session, Thursday, January 5th at 3 pm, entitled: Incorporating Access to Justice & Pro Bono Across the Law School Curriculum.
Critical to the professional development of future lawyers are instilling an ethic of service and understanding how the growing justice gap impacts legal services. Access to justice and pro bono service can be effective lenses through which to explore any law school subject, and yet most law professors do not include them in their syllabi. This session features faculty whose courses provide students with insight into how lower-income people navigate the legal system and the ways in which that may differ from what we learn in casebooks. Attendees will leave with practical and replicable tools to integrate access to justice and pro bono service into courses across the law school curriculum.
Many thanks to the sections on Debtor and Credit’s Rights, Clinical Law, and Leadership for co-sponsoring this panel, which will be moderated by Darcy Meals, Director of Public Interest Programs and Deputy Director of the Center for Access to Justice at Georgia State University College of Law. Panelists include:
Stacy Butler, Director of the Innovation for Justice Program, University of Arizona School of Law;
Jim Sandman, President Emeritus of the Legal Services Corporation and Distinguished Lecturer and Senior Consultant to the Future of the Profession Initiative, University of Pennsylvania Law;
Lauren Sudeall, Faculty Director of the Center for Access to Justice, Georgia State University College of Law; and
Julia I. Vázquez, Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the Community Lawyering Clinic and the Public Interest concentration, Southwestern Law School
The Sections on Clinical Law, Poverty, and Pro Bono & Access to Justice are partnering to offer a service opportunity for conference attendees. We’ll be gathering to do some cleanup in the marina (right by the conference hotels) through I Love A Clean San Diego from 11 am-1 pm on Thursday, January 5th. They’ll provide gloves and trash bags and a brief overview of the importance of protecting the bay, and then we’ll help with clean up. Dress in closed-toed shoes and comfortable attire and meet at the concierge desk in the Marriott lobby at 10:50 am to walk over as a group. Please add this event to your conference registration, so we have a record of who plans to participate.
Many of us are often advising students to grow their resumes, engage in opportunities to network, and gain leadership experience. Let’s take a piece of our own advice! Get to know your colleagues working in the Pro Bono & Access to Justice law school spaces across the country while taking on the leadership role. The AALS Section on Pro Bono & Access to Justice is seeking members of the Section join the Executive Committee with opportunities to work on a variety of initiatives. If you are interested in, please reach out to[email protected].