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HCBA Honors 10 with Excellence Awards
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NEWS RELEASE: April 17, 2019

MINNEAPOLIS— The Hennepin County Bar Association (HCBA) recognizes 10 attorney members with its 2019 HCBA Excellence Awards. The awards honor members for their service to the local legal profession, the community, and the association. The HCBA selected nine members for their work from among six different categories and one member for career contributions to the profession. The HCBA will recognize the 10 honorees in the following categories at the association’s annual meeting on May 30:  

 • Blaine Balow (Halunen Law) for Providing Pro Bono Service: Mr. Balow has done a significant amount of pro bono work for Tubman, an organization dedicated to assisting individuals escaping domestic violence

• Jess Birken (Birken Law) for Advancing Innovation in the Profession: Ms. Birken has led the HCBA Tech Practice series, which helps lawyers integrate technology into their practice management.

• Michael Boulette (Barnes & Thornburg) for Providing Pro Bono Service: Mr. Boulette provides numerous pro bono services for family law clients through Tubman and Children’s Law Center.   

• Kendra Brodin (Briggs and Morgan) for Service to the Association/Foundation: Ms. Brodin has served as chair of the HCBA Law Firm Leadership Program, which has developed into one the most popular programs the HCBA offers.

• Sybil L. Dunlop (Greene Espel) for Advancing Diversity & Inclusion: Ms. Dunlop created a popular CLE course educating lawyers and community leaders on implicit bias and its negative effects.

• Pamela Hoopes (Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid/Minnesota Disability Law Center) for Career Contributions to the Profession: Ms. Hoopes will be awarded the Career Contributions to the Profession Award for nearly three decades of service through her leadership at the Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid’s Minnesota Disability Law Center.

• Loan T. Huynh (Fredrikson & Byron) and Cynthia Y. Lee (Faegre Baker Daniels) for Advancing Diversity & Inclusion: Ms. Huynh and Ms. Lee co-founded the annual Women of Color in the Law Forum, which has developed into one of the prominent career development and networking opportunities for female attorneys of color.

• Lisa Lodin Peralta (Peralta Appellate Law) for Advancing Diversity & Inclusion: Ms. Peralta founded the Barristers Breakfast, which raises funds for the students of Joyce Preschool, which provides English and Spanish-speaking students a high-quality education and family support, and she has successfully brought in other community stakeholders as part of the event.

• Gloria Stamps-Smith (Hennepin County Attorney’s Office) for Mentoring in the Profession: Ms. Stamps-Smith mentors members of the community at all levels, whether it’s visiting local high schools through the Minneapolis Public School’s 100 Strong initiative, connecting with students at the University of St. Thomas, or leading the Minnesota Association of Black Lawyers’ Judicial Workshop.

 The Hennepin County Bar Association is the largest of Minnesota’s local bar associations, with a membership of over 8,000, serving the profession and the public. 

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