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Pro-bono service is a very important part of a lawyer's career, so it is good to see the trailblazers in this area be recognized for their services. A law firm that has been at the forefront of the growing pro-bono movement in Los Angeles since the 1930's will be honored this year by the American Bar Association.
O'Melveny & Myers LLP will be recognized with one of five 2011 Pro Bono Publico Awards from the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service on August 8, at the Pro Bono Publico Awards Assembly Luncheon during the ABA Annual Meeting in Toronto.
O’Melveny & Myers’ attorneys averaged approximately 120 hours each in pro-bono service in 2010, with the pro-bono work representing approximately 6.7 percent of the firm’s billable output.
The firm has a requirement that all new attorneys participate in at least one pro-bono activity during their first year at the firm.
O’Melveny & Myers was one of the first law firms in Southern California to charter a formal pro bono committee and in 2006, it launched its Pro Bono Initiative.
O’Melveny has worked in many areas and with many nonprofit organizations. O’Melveny’s attorneys have worked on food stamp issues, gay rights and with organizations dedicated to Holocaust survivors. O’Melveny attorneys have also worked on immigration cases and have written extensive training manuals instructing volunteer attorneys on representing detained immigrants.
“The difference between good and great lawyers is that great ones make a difference in society. That’s fundamentally what pro bono does. It is crucial to taking on this country’s appalling lack of access to justice, without which there is no rule of law,” said ABA President Stephen N. Zack.