Header5a - RH
Issue: Vol 2  # 11
November, 2010   
In This Issue
Annual CLE & Volunteer Appreciation Coming Up ...
Sign Up For A Clinic ...
Open the Door ...
Sign, Pray, Thanks!
Annual CLE & Volunteer Appreciation Awards Coming Up ...

for the annual end-of-year CLE and Volunteer Appreciation Awards & Reception event scheduled for  Thursday, December 9, 2010.   Our host once again this year will be Jones Walker.  The event will be held in their auditorium at 201 St. Charles Avenue, 51st Floor.

   The CLE program, "What Tangled Webs We Weave:  Ethical Issues Involving the Relationship between Lawyers and Judges" is presented by Tim Averill, Esq

   The Honorable Ginger Berrigan, US District Court Judge, will be doing the honors as Master of Ceremonies for the Awards Presentation this year, helping us recognize our stellar volunteers. 

   Registration opens at 3:30 pm.  The CLE is from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm with the Volunteer Appreciation Awards & Reception from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pmREGISTER ONLINE HERE.

   We hope you can join us on Thursday, December 9th at Jones Walker.

   In addition, please don't forget to report your volunteer hours for 2010 to LINTON CARNEY ASAP -- we want to make sure we acknowledge everyone and we can only say "Thanks" with your help!

Sign Up For A Clinic

   Fall is a busy time for The Project.  Volunteers are needed to staff several clinics in the metro area.  For more information and exact locations, please download the complete schedule from: FALL CLINIC SCHEDULE.

Open the Door: Be A Partner for Pro Bono

LA Giving B&W

Please open the door for our clients and volunteers and support The Project by clicking on the Louisiana Giving logo above. 

Become a
Partner for Pro Bono
by checking the
"make this a recurring donation" box on The Project's donation page when you click the above link. Make your Annual Donation over 12 months.

 Help us plan for the future by contacting
Rachel PIercey at 504.581.4043 about the Pro Bono for Life Planned Giving program.

Follow-up Links
JFAB 2010

    By now most folk have either read the book, seen the movie or heard about the bestseller Eat, Pray, Love!  At The Pro Bono Project we have our own version called Sigh, Pray, Thanks!

    We'll start with the Thanks first as the annual Thanksgiving holiday is fast approaching.  Though still a week away, it's never too early to say thanks to all those who help make what we do possible -- our volunteers.  Whether they are attorneys, paralegals, administrative support staff or other business and legal professionals -- they contribute a great deal to The Project.  Their willingness to give of their time, talent and services ensures that The Project is able to open the doors to justice for those in need of civil legal services in our community.

    The other half of the Thanks equation for The Project is those who provide funding.  Whether it's a grantor the size of Oxfam America, the individual who gives $100, or the law firm that gives $5,000 -- every dollar counts toward helping us serve the residents in need from the six-parish area around New Orleans.  We couldn't do what we do without this important component.


   And so, humbly we say, Thank You!  Our stories in this edition reflect our gratitude -- from the Volunteer Appreciation Awards on December 9th to the latest cy pres (Sigh Pray - get it?) award received in a timely manner, just a day after the cy pres CLE event at Baker Donelson.


Oh, and by the way, Happy Thanksgiving to all!


With kind thanks,

Rachel Piercey
Executive Director

PS -- Spread the word about The Pro Bono Project by using the new social media buttons and connect this newsletter to your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or other social media page. Thanks!
Sigh, Pray, Thanks!

    For those of you who attended, the Baker Donelson-hosted CLE entitled, Cy Pres for You and Me: The Intersection with Professional Responsibility, you know that our story title is a twist on an unusual way that funds can come to The Project. 

   Baker Donelson's Sherry Dolan, who presented the CLE in conjunction with The Project, as part of the 2010 ABA National Pro Bono Celebration, explains, "Cy Pres literally translates into 'next best use' and is a judicial doctrine that allows residual class action funds to be used for the prospective, indirect benefit of an aggregate class.  One way to do this is to donate such funds to legal service organizations, such as The Pro Bono Project."

    Many who attended the CLE commented afterwards that they were unaware of this great tool allowing for the use of class action residual funds to bring pro bono legal services to those most in need. 
Although often designated by the plaintiff attorneys, a cy pres award can be part of consent agreement, settlement agreement or judge determined.  Additionally, defense attorneys negotiating a class action settlement can negotiate a provision that residuals funds would go to whatever cause they want.

   The Pro Bono Project was fortunate to receive a cy pres award this year in connection with the Final Approval of Allocations and Disbursements in the class action case of Philip Bayer, et al. v. Omni Hotels Mgmnt Corp., CDC No. 03-17354.  The Pro Bono Project was the recipient of a Cy Pres award of $10,000.

    This case was pending before The Honorable Michael G. Bagneris, a former board member and past-president of The Pro Bono Project. The Project would also like to thank Scott Seiler (Liskow & Lewis), the Administrator of the class action and a special thanks to the Bayer v. Omni Settlement Fund who funded the award.

2010 Cy Pres Award
Rachel Piercey receives the cy pres award check from The Honorable Judge Michael Bagneris.
     Cy Pres is an important funding resource available to The Pro Bono Project.  By providing this information about cy pres, we hope that those attorneys who work regularly in class action litigation will direct such funds to support The Project if they are presented with the opportunity to do so.

    While cy pres awards only come along once in awhile, there are many ways to support work of The Pro Bono Project.  One way that is really easy is through the Louisiana Giving website

   Through this website, you can set up a monthly giving plan, designate how you want us to use your gift, provide a gift in someone's name in lieu of a present, or give a gift in someone's memory.  It's safe and secure and 100% of the funds come to The Project.  Click on the link above, in the sidebar or on the homepage of our website to give your annual year-end gift now.

    Our thanks once again to Sherry Dolan and Baker Donelson for helping to educate our volunteers and supporters about cy pres, and our thanks to all for your on-going commitment to support The Project financially.  Happy Thanksgiving! 

Our Mission

The Pro Bono Project's mission is to provide free, quality civil legal services to the poor by engaging volunteer attorneys to render pro bono services.
  The Project serves Orleans, Jefferson, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Tammany and Washington Parishes with funding from the Justice For All Ball and other sources.  The Project works in collaboration with other legal and social service providers to improve the quality of life for our clients and our community.