Miami, FL (Vocus) February 5, 2010
The international law firm Greenberg Traurig LLP, in alliance with Equal Justice Works, has named its 2010 Fellows. Nine individuals will receive funding though the Greenberg Traurig Fellowship Foundation to provide pro bono legal services to community programs. The public interest law fellowships begin in September and run for two years. The combined classes of 2009 and 2010 will consist of 19 fellows.
“Giving back to the community is a high priority at Greenberg Traurig,” said Holly Skolnick, president and founder of the Greenberg Traurig Fellowship Foundation. “This year’s remarkable class of fellows will focus on relevant and important issues that are consistent with the firm’s initiatives.”
Greenberg Traurig is the largest provider of fellowships to Equal Justice Works, which offers matching funds for the fellowships as well as assistance in the selection and training of the fellows. Since the Foundation was established in 1998, Greenberg Traurig has sponsored, in whole or in part, almost 100 fellows who have worked on innovative public interest projects in many of the communities in which the firm’s attorneys practice. The fellowships offers salary and loan repayment assistance, a national training and leadership development program, and other forms of support.
“Greenberg Traurig values its partnership with Equal Justice Works in sponsoring fellows to impact a wide variety of well deserving populations,” Skolnick said. “In addition to benefiting the local organization, fellows gain hands-on legal experience and form relationships with the firm’s attorneys who also dedicate their time to specific causes.”
The current Greenberg Traurig-sponsored fellows are working on projects in various states across the country. The issues they tackle range from domestic violence, the elderly, housing, and juvenile justice to community economic development, immigration, access to affordable health care and disability rights.
The fellowships currently selected to start in September 2010 and their selected organizations are as follows:
Todd Belcore, Northwestern University School of Law
Sargent Shriver National Center for Poverty Law, Chicago, IL: Will work to break the current cycle of lifelong poverty and repeated imprisonment that accompanies having a criminal record by using organizing, outreach, policy advocacy and litigation to increase ex-offenders’ access to occupational licenses and gainful employment.
Kristin Connor, New York University School of Law
Diocesan Migrant & Refugee Services, El Paso, TX: Will provide abandoned, abused and neglected immigrant youth in west Texas and southern New Mexico a path to citizenship through legal advocacy, community outreach and organizational capacity building.
Erin Cox, Boston College Law School
Lutheran Social Services, Wellesley, MA: Will provide direct legal representation and outreach to unaccompanied immigrant children in Greater Boston.
Ashley Deadwyler, Mercer University-Walter F. George School of Law
Georgia Justice Project, Atlanta, GA: Will provide indigent clients in the Middle Georgia area with assistance to overcome the civil and criminal barriers to prisoner reentry in an effort to reduce recidivism in our community.
Maren Jaffee, University of Colorado School of Law
Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, Towaoc, CO: Will provide public defender and civil legal services to indigent persons on the Ute Mountain Ute Reservation.
Ashley Ortagus, Florida State University College of Law
The Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County, Inc., West Palm Beach, FL: Will provide dependent and delinquent teen girls, who are pregnant or have had children, with holistic legal representation, systemic relief through litigation, and empowerment through educational advocacy.
Purvi Patel, Northeastern University School of Law
Health & Disability Advocates, Chicago, IL: Will help transition adolescents with disabilities or critical health needs from pediatric to adult-oriented health care, while optimizing functionality, assumption of adult roles and access to public benefits.
Charlotte Whitmore, University of Pennsylvania Law School
Pennsylvania Innocence Project, Philadelphia, PA: Will secure the exoneration of innocent persons, provide civil legal services for exonerees looking to re-enter society, and improve the effectiveness of the criminal justice system in Pennsylvania.
Sara Wood, University of Virginia School of Law
MFY Legal Services, Inc., New York, NY: Will provide legal representation to family caregivers in benefits, custody, guardianship and adoption proceedings and help expand pro bono networks to New York State counties outside of New York City.
About Greenberg Traurig, LLP
Greenberg Traurig, LLP, http://www.gtlaw.com, is an international, full-service law firm with approximately 1775 attorneys serving clients from more than 30 offices in the United States, Europe and Asia. In the U.S., the firm has more offices than any other among the Top 20 on The National Law Journal’s 2009 NLJ 250. In the U.K., the firm operates as Greenberg Traurig Maher LLP. Additionally, Greenberg Traurig has strategic alliances with the following independent law firms: Studio Santa Maria in Milan and Rome, TA Lawyers GKJ in Tokyo, and Weber Law Office in Zurich. The firm was Chambers and Partners' USA Law Firm of the Year in 2007 and among the Top 3 in the International Law Firm of the Year.