Free Webinar Training for Deferred Firm Associates Taking Public Interest Placements

Public Interest Perspectives–An Introductory Training for Private Attorneys in Public Interest Placements

Save the Date:  September 9, 2009 at 1:00pm Eastern Time

The Association of Pro Bono Counsel and NALP are pleased to announce a free national training for attorneys beginning volunteer public interest placements.   Please pass this on to interested parties.

What: A free national web-based training for attorneys who are beginning extended public service placements with legal aid and other nonprofit legal organizations.   The training will provide an overview of the differences in law firm and nonprofit practice settings, insight on working with low-income clients, and background on the economic challenges presently being confronted by the public interest community.

Who: The training is designed for all attorneys taking temporary, extended public interest placements.   While the training focuses particularly on practice in civil legal services organizations, the information is relevant to most public interest settings.   A coalition of public interest leaders from the legal aid community and the private bar designed and will present this training.

Why: As a result of the current economy, many attorneys, especially newer attorneys, who expected to be in private practice are beginning extended placements in legal aid and other public interest organizations.    This training aims to provide a bridge program for associates transitioning into a practice setting with which they may be unfamiliar.  By providing this preliminary training, we hope to best prepare these attorneys to engage in this unique opportunity to contribute to and learn about the public interest legal community.

When: This 2 hour program will be offered on September 9, 1:00pm Eastern Time.

Where: This training can be accessed from any computer and phone line.  In many cities, organizers are planning a central location (bar association, law firm, etc.) so attorneys may participate in the training together. Following these sessions, a discussion on issues relevant to fellowships will follow the long-distance training.  We encourage attorneys to attend the live session with their colleagues.  Details will follow from local organizations.

Register: If you are able to participate in this training, please register now:

Questions: If you have any questions or for more information, please contact Kelly Tautges at or 312-554-8356.

Program Faculty:

  • Margaret C. Benson, Executive Director, Chicago Volunteer Legal Services
  • Tiela Chalmers, Executive Director, Volunteer Legal Services Program of the San Francisco Bar Association
  • Steven Grumm, Director of Public Service Initiatives, National Association for Law Placement (NALP)
  • Bruce Iwasaki, Senior Partner, Lim Ruger & Kim, LLP; and former Executive Director, Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles
  • Harlene Katzman, Pro Bono Counsel, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, LLP
  • David Lash – Managing Counsel of Public Interest and Pro Bono Services, O’Melveny & Myers, LLP; and former Executive Director, Bet Tzedek
  • Steven H. Schulman, Pro Bono Partner, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, LLP
  • Jonathan Smith – Executive Director, Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia
  • John Tull – former Executive Director, Southern Arizona Legal Aid; and former Vice President for Programs, Legal Services Corporation
  • Angela Vigil – North American Director, Pro Bono & Community Service, Baker & McKenzie; and former Director, Children’s Law Pro Bono Program, Northwestern University School of Law