Equal Access to Justice Campaign Donors

Annual ‘Equal Access to Justice’ Campaign Flourishes

Alicia Hernandez – Headnotes

The Dallas Bar Association and Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas will recognize major donors to the annual Campaign for Equal Access to Justice at the inaugural of Frank E. Stevenson II on Saturday, January 19. The Annual campaign, which culminates at the inaugural, supports the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program, a joint program of the Dallas Bar Association and Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas. Since it began in 1993, the campaign has raised more than $4 million for legal aid to the poor.

Michael  and Judy Keller Shore have been major donors to the campaign for 10 year’s, supporting this year’s campaign with a gift of $25,000. The Shores have donated $230,000 to the campaign since 1999.

“Judy and I are pleased, with the support of our partners and their spouses at Shore Chan Bragalone LLP, to be able to continue our support of the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program,” says Michael Shore. “The attention we receive for this is humbling and in our opinion, somewhat over-emphasized. The persons who really deserve attention are those attorneys who invest their ‘spare time’ that  they would otherwise spend with family and intersts away from the practice of law. Without the attorney volunteers who give their time, monetary donors like us would make no difference at all. Judy and I wold like to encourage young attorneys with office practices to vlunteer and see for themselves what their law degree can do for those people in our community who need the attorneys’ talents most.”

Hon. Deborah G. Hankinson, a major donor for five years, continues to demonstrate her support for legal services to the poor. Justice Hankinson contributed $25,000 to this year’s campaign, and she has given $90,000 to the campaign since 2003.

Koons, Fuller, Vanden Eykel & Robertson, P.C. has been a major donor for 13 years. With their 2008 gift of $15,000, the firm has contributed a total of $182,500 to the campaign.

Brown McCarroll, L.L.P. has been a major donor for 12 years. The firm has donated $15,000 to this year’s campaign, and the firm has given a total of $161,740 to the Campaign for Equal Access since 2005.

The following firms, corporations, and individuals have generously donated at the $10,000 level: Exxon Mobil Corp., Jones Day, Locke Lord Bissell & Liddell LLP, Mike McKool Jr., and Waters Kraus Paul & Siegel, L.L.P.

DVAP Relies on Generous Support of Donors & Volunteers

As of our print date, this year’s campaign has raised more than $364,845.

Several dedicated volunteers have donated their time and fundraising skills to make this year’s campaign a success.

Paul Stafford, an attorney with Hughes & Luce, LLP, and vice chair of the DBA Board of Directors, is this year’s campaign chair. Diane Sumsoki, a partner with Carrington, Coleman, Sloman, & Blumenthal., L.L.P., and a dedicated pro bono attorney, is this year’s co-chair.

The 2008 campaign committee members include 2007 DBA President Beverly Godbey, 2007 DBA Second Vice President Ike Vanden Eykel, Sally Crawford,Michael Hurst, Rashee Raj, Sarah Shaw, Brad Weber and Joel Winful.

As a part of the annual campaign, the committee sponsored several telephone banks where lawyers volunteered to call attorneys in Dallas and ask for a contribution to the campaign. Telephone bank volunteers included the members of the campaign committee, as well as Mary Goodrich Nix, Holland Sullivan, Rick Lambert,Nicola Hobeiche, Monte Hurst, Jonathan Childers and Sophia Palat. This year, the campaign is raffling a 2008 Porsche Boxster to raise additional funds for the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program. Raffle tickets are $100 each and are available for purchase at the Dallas Bar Association’s business office or online at www.dallasbar.org until noon on Friday, January 18, or at 6 p.m. on January 19, just prior to the DBA Inaugural Ball. No more than 1,500 raffle tickets will be sold. The raffle drawing will be held at the inaugural on January 19. The winner does not need to be present to win.

In addition to the campaign committee, the raffle ticket sales team includes Diane Couchman, Joe Cox, Tino Ramirez, Jenny Stewart, Omar Alaniz, Mike Forshey, Mark Sales, Anne Shuttee, David Rohlf, Aubrey Connatser, and the entire Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program staff.

In 2007, the Dallas Bar Association and Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas celebrated the 25th anniversary of pro bono in Dallas, the 10th anniversary of the award-winning, nationally recognized Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program, and the 15th anniversary of the annual Campaign for Equal Access to Justice.

The DBA and LANWT are appreciative of all the lawyers and legal professionals who have contributed to the success of these programs over the years, again demonstrating the legal profession’s strong commitment to community service and helping those in need.

The Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program recruits, trains and supports pro bono attorneys in providing free, civil legal aid to the poor in Dallas. The program’s services are provided to low-income residents who meet financial eligibility guidelines. To receive legal services, the gross annual income of a family of four must be less than $25,000.

There are an estimated 1.2 million people living in poverty in the Dallas/FortWorth area. Volunteers and staff work diligently to serve those who need access to the justice system, but more help is always needed.

Volunteers can interview clients at any of the program’s nine monthly Neighborhood Legal Clinics or represent DVAP clients in bankruptcy, consumer, family benefits, landlord-tenant, housing, will and probate cases.

DVAP volunteers receive malpractice insurance, free CLE, and mentoring through the program.

For more information on how to donate to the campaign, or to volunteer for the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program, contact Alicia Hernandez at ahernandez@dallasbar.org or 214-220-7499.       HN

Alicia Hernandez is the director of the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program.

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