From the Executive Director:
Welcome to the second issue of Pro Bono Pulse, where we bring you the latest insights into the world of pro bono and share how your support and commitment make a difference for those in need. On January 16 we celebrated our birthday—28 years of providing advocacy, training, and support for the volunteer lawyers and pro bono programs who form the backbone of pro bono services in Maryland. We also celebrate the success and impact of our project initiatives for at-risk homeowners, consumer debtors, unaccompanied children, low-income tenants, veterans and seniors. These 28 years would not have been possible without the amazing dedication, hard work, and support of our staff, board, volunteers, funders, and partners. I thank all of you for your commitment to economic and social justice.
PBRC holds a unique space in the legal services community. We connect individual lawyers, nonprofits, the bar, the courts, and the larger community in which we live. I am proud that PBRC has become a thought leader in legal services, always seeking to understand community needs and then joining with others to meet those needs. Collaboration and coordination are among our core values. Nowhere is this more evident than at our annual Maryland Partners for Justice Conference. This year, we are especially pleased to mark the 20th annual gathering with a luncheon keynote address by Maryland’s Attorney General, Brian Frosh.
Since we believe that effective advocacy starts with learning from our clients, we will also be joined by guest speakers Ciera Dunlap and Blair Franklin of the Youth Empowered Society (YES) Drop-In Center. Ms. Dunlap’s journey with YES started when she was a homeless client, and continues to this day, as she serves with Mr. Franklin in the leadership of the organization.
I hope you will join us at the Baltimore Convention Center on April 26 to discuss critical issues facing the underrepresented in our state and explore unified strategies to address those barriers.
Whether you are a volunteer, supporter or partner – we welcome you to come together to learn and to teach. By working together we can secure greater access to justice in our state. Thank you for your help in our unified mission.
Sharon E. Goldsmith, Esq.