|Beacon of Justice Award Winners Announced Today|
WASHINGTON, D.C., (August 30, 2013) - The National Legal Aid and Defender Association (NLADA) is delighted to announce the names of the 2013 Beacon of Justice Award winners. The seventeen law firms honored have all devoted considerable time and resources to delivering on the mandate of Gideon v Wainwright, which fifty years ago established the right to counsel for people accused of a crime and facing a loss of liberty.
Each winner has been chosen for their accomplishments in advancing Gideon's principles through law reform or individual representation. A small sample of these successes include the exoneration of innocent people; landmark appellate victories that promote effective representation; pardons or commutations that ameliorate the impact of unnecessarily harsh and disparate sentences; and the dedication of tens of thousands of pro bono hours that ensured that individuals received competent counsel and fair treatment under the law.
"These firms truly serve as beacons of justice." stated Jo-Ann Wallace, NLADA President and CEO. "Their achievements in advancing the cause of equal justice through pro bono generosity provide the entire legal community with a powerful example. I am so proud to have private partners that consistently demonstrate exactly what we can achieve when we work together to secure justice under the law."
The Beacon of Justice Award winners will be formally honored at the NLADA Exemplar Award Dinner on Thursday, September 19, 2013, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington D.C. The ceremony, hosted by CBS News national correspondent Dan Raviv, will also feature the presentation of the Exemplar Award to Teri Plummer McClure, chief legal, communications and compliance officer, UPS. Tickets for the event may be purchased at www.nlada.org.
The full list of 2013 Beacon of Justice law firms is as follows:
National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA) is America's oldest and largest nonprofit association devoted to excellence in the delivery of legal services to those who cannot afford counsel. For more than 100 years, NLADA has pioneered access to justice at the national, state and local level through the creation of our public defender system, development of nationally applicable standards for legal representation, groundbreaking legal legislation and the creation of important institutions such as the Legal Services Corporation. For more information, visit www.nlada.org.