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Nominate Someone Who Makes A Difference Through Pro Bono and Volunteer Services

In Illinois – and across the country – the demand for legal services for low-income individuals and families far exceeds the supply. But individual attorneys, legal aid organizations, law firms, corporate law departments, and bar associations across the state are working to close the gap or mitigate its effects through pro bono and volunteer service.  

These passionate lawyers don’t do it for the accolades, but the valuable work they do reflects positively on the profession. For this reason, the ISBA Standing Committee on Delivery of Legal Services (DLS) presents up to four awards each year recognizing the outstanding efforts of legal professionals working to provide access to justice. These awards recognize the complementary efforts of both legal aid professionals and attorneys in private practice.

  • The Joseph R. Bartylak Memorial Legal Services Award is presented to honor the extraordinary commitment and dedication of an attorney employed by a legal aid organization who has provided the highest caliber of compassionate legal representation and outstanding service to Illinois’ vulnerable and low-income population.  Recent awardees include Lisa Colpoys, the executive director of Illinois Legal Aid Online (ILAO), an innovative organization that uses the power of technology to make accurate information available to self-help litigants and lawyers serving low-income clients. Ms. Colpoys says that she has dedicated her career to public service because she “wants to make a difference in the world and make an impact on other people.”  If you know someone who shares Ms. Colpoys’ passion for leveraging legal assistance to improve the lives of fellow Illinois residents, please nominate him or her for this award.
  • The John C. McAndrews Pro Bono Service Awards are given to individuals, bar associations, law firms, and corporate law departments providing free legal services or expanding the availability of legal services to low-income persons.  
    • Last year, the three-lawyer firm of Doyen Law Group was recognized for its active partnership with Prairie State Legal Services to provide pro bono representation to low-income residents of Kane and DeKalb counties. 
    • The United Airlines law department was honored in 2015 for assisting more than 235 clients through Equip for Equality, the Battered Women’s Network, and other legal aid organizations.  
    • In 2014, the Madison County Bar Association was selected for its members’ efforts on behalf of 86 clients through the Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation.

DLS is proud to recognize the members of our profession who strive to level the playing field for low-income litigants. Know someone who has made a difference this year? Nominations are due March 2, 2018.

Posted on February 2, 2018 by Sara Anderson
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