Minneapolis (03-31-08): -- For the tenth consecutive year, the Hennepin County Bar Foundation’s annual Bar Benefit set a record for gifts contributed to serve the legal needs of the disadvantaged. In an increase of 25% above 2007 giving, over $123,500 was contributed to the Foundation, while the Volunteer Lawyers Network received almost $20,000 through their silent auction and raffle held in conjunction with the benefit. Courtney Ward-Reichard, Foundation president and chair of the planning committee expressed her enthusiastic thanks to all for their generosity.
The Bar Benefit, held Tuesday, March 11, at the Radisson Plaza Hotel, was an evening of fellowship, fun, and fundraising, enthusiastically supported by hundreds of members of the legal community, both bench and bar. In addition to providing financial support for legal services, the legal community also honors those who have distinguished themselves in pro bono work.
Recipients of this year’s Pro Bono Publico awards were:
Mary Cullen Yeager, Faegre & Benson (the Distinguished Service award, which recognizes overall commitment to pro bono service throughout a lawyer’s career);
Patricia Siebert, Legal Aid Society of Minneapolis (award for excellence in the public sector); and
Gary Hansen, Oppenheimer Wolff & Donnelly (award for excellence by an attorney from the private sector).
Also, law firms were again recognized for successful participation in the HCBA Pro Bono Challenge by providing at least 3% of their 2007 billable hours to pro bono work.
Founded in 1968, the Hennepin County Bar Foundation is dedicated to the mission of ensuring the fairness of, and accessibility to, the legal system by promoting public understanding and confidence in our system of justice. Toward this end the Foundation makes grants each year to community organizations involved in public legal education and the delivery of legal services to the citizens of Hennepin County. Grants for 2008 will be announced in July. Over $600,000 in grants have been distributed in the last decade, supported in large part by the Bar Benefit, as well as individual contributions from the members of the Hennepin County Bar Association.
# # # # #
Digital images from the event, available on request, can be e-mailed immediately. Call (612) 752-6615 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.