Header5a - RH
Issue: Vol 4 #6        
June, 2012     
In This Issue
Save the Date; JFAB Update ...
Go Solo ...
Opening the Door: Reuniting Father & Son ...
Register Now!

July 12, 2012
Brown Bag CLE
1 CLE Credit

How Estate Planning & Charitable Giving Can Benefit You

Presented by
Carole Neff of Sessions Fishman

12 noon to 1:00 PM 
Founders Room
Bar Center, 601 St. Charles
Register via email:
Linton Carney

JFAB 2012 Update

2012 Justice For All Ball

September 28, 2012 
8:00 pm to Midnight
Audubon Tea Room

Honorary Co-Chairs
Deirdre McGlinchey & Fionuala McGlinchey-Monsted 

Big Sam's Funky Nation  

Original Invitation Art
Robert Guthrie 

The Fun
Live & Silent Auction 
The Raffle 

Food & Beverages
From New Orleans' Finest Restaurants 

Sponsorship Info
Contact Rachel Piercey

Ticket Info
$100/Attorneys practicing< 5 years 
$75/Law Students  
Call 504.581.4043 for tickets or purchase online at: JFAB TICKETS

Go Solo!
 Open the Door &  Support The Project Now!

LA Giving B&W

Individual gifts are the single most important funding we receive.

 It only takes a handful of individuals to make a difference -- go solo this year and make an individual gift in addition to your firm's contributions. 

When you take solo to the next level and multiply it by enlisting your colleagues to give individually, it means we can open the door wider  for our clients and volunteers. 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 2011


     As we roll into summer, it brings to mind all the children and families that will enjoy a few weeks of vacationing and being together to enjoy each other and time away from the norm.  But, those who have worked with The Project know that sometimes family isn't quite such a pleasant experience, and family law continues to be a significant part of The Project's caseload.


     To that end, we are featuring a wonderful story about a persistent father, along with the volunteer attorneys who helped him get the Christmas present of a lifetime.   


     And, speaking of pro bono on behalf of families, we want to offer applause to the many attorneys and firms that were part of the Louisiana State Bar Association's (LSBA) Pro Bono and Children's Awards held at the Louisiana Supreme Court on May 29, 2012.  Receiving the Pro Bono Publico Award were several of our volunteer firms and solo practioners, among them Adams & Reese LLP and attorneys Michael Duplantier, Matthew Livaccari, Barbara Siefken and Sean Sullivan. As well, kudos to our long time volunteer, Patricia Krebs, Louisiana Bar Foundation President, who offered comments and presented the Law Student Pro Bono Awards. For details and photos: LSBA   


     As well, congratulations also go out to the 2012-2013 officers of the LSBA, recently installed at the annual conference in Destin, FL.  Hats off to John H Musser, IV, the new LSBA President, and one of our solo practitioner volunteers. We also want to celebrate with Board member, John 'Eddie' McAuliffe, Jr., who received one of five President's Awards given at the conference for his service to the LSBA and the attorneys, legal professionals and organizations it serves. Eddie serves as the New Orleans Bar Association's (NOBA) designee on The Project's Board. For details: LSBA 


     Finally, in the words of newly elected LSBA President John Musser, as he declared this as "The Year of the Solo", we want to remind you that you can go solo too with an individual contribution directly to The Project through Louisiana Giving/Just Give.  Feel free to designate which program you want your funds to go to, or give in honor or remembrance of someone. As well, you can also designate your solo United Way donation for The Project -- simply name 'The Pro Bono Project' on your pledge form or provide our agency number 1087220.  


     As always, thank you for continued support and here's to 'the year of the solo.'  Happy summer, all! 

All the best,


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!    Find us on Facebook                            

Opening The Door: Reuniting Father & Son ...

     There's nothing like being 'home for the holidays' -- whether it's Christmas or July 4th.  In a hard-fought custody case, volunteer attorneys, Jamie Berger and Jimmy Michaels of Barrasso Usdin made sure that this Father's Day, their pro bono client would be celebrating with his son by his side.

     Interestingly, neither attorney had any experience in family law with
Jamie Berger
Jamie Berger
Jimmy admitted to the Bar only two weeks prior to the trial and Jamie coming back from a pre-Christmas vacation to take the lead in the case.

     Both attorneys could have coasted quietly through the holidays and into the new year. Instead they chose to get involved, and in doing so became embroiled in a nasty dispute between the child's grandmother and father over custody.

     After the young boy's mother tragically passed away, the child's maternal grandmother claimed their pro bono client was not the child's father, and obtained a temporary custody order.

Jimmy Michaels
Jimmy Michaels 

The grandmother picked the boy up at school the same day, and the father was denied the right to see his son.  


     The grandmother then filed a petition to gain full and permanent custody of the boy, and the father contacted The Project for assistance. The Project brought Jamie and Jimmy together with the client and they took the case on his behalf.  


     After a day-long trial, the Court granted the client full and permanent custody, declaring him the boy's biological father. The child was returned to the father just in time to celebrate Christmas and New Year's, and now Father's Day at home.  Perhaps, there is a Santa after all!  


     "It was a real thrill being able to actively participate in the trial and an even bigger thrill when the judge granted our client full custody of his son," said Jimmy about his first foray into pro bono Family Law.  

     Not all cases are this complex or intense, but the willingness of Jamie and Jimmy to venture into an area of the law that's not their practice area is what makes this kind of effort so special and rewarding for both our clients and volunteer attorneys.  


     With the guidance of The Project's staff, Board members and others, taking on a Family Law case -- even when it's not your area -- can be filled with joy and satisfaction at having used your legal skills well.


     Our special thanks to Barrasso Usdin for their continuing commitment of time, talent and financial support to The Pro Bono Project, and to their recognition of the importance of pro bono service to the metropolitan community.  


     For more information or to take on a case in Family Law or any of the other practice areas available, please contact Linton Carney at 504.581.4043 x 207.  

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.