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Baker Donelson Recognizes Attorneys for Pro Bono Work

(Memphis, TN/June 21, 2007) Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC, has recognized a number of attorneys throughout the Firm for their pro bono work.

David F. Maron was named the firm-wide 2007 Baker Donelson Pro Bono Attorney of the Year. A shareholder in the Jackson, Mississippi office of Baker Donelson, Mr. Maron was recognized for his pro bono service providing legal assistance in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. As the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division Mississippi District Representative and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Liaison for Disaster Legal Assistance, Mr. Maron provided more than 120 hours of pro bono service for victims of Hurricane Katrina. Mr. Maron's efforts have been recognized by the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division with its "Star of the Quarter" award and by the Mississippi Center for Justice with one of only three statewide awards for "Exemplary Pro Bono Service in the Wake of Hurricane Katrina."

Baker Donelson also recognized attorneys in many of its individual offices for their pro bono efforts.

  • D. Keith Andress, Birmingham Pro Bono Attorney of the Year. A shareholder in the Birmingham office, Mr. Andress was recognized for his pro bono service on a health care litigation case.
  • David A. Rueff and J. Scott Newton, Jackson (Mississippi) Pro Bono Attorneys of the Year: Both shareholders in Baker Donelson's Jackson, Mississippi office, Mr. Rueff and Mr. Newton were recognized for their service providing legal assistance to Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour's Commission for Recovery, Rebuilding and Renewal. The two attorneys also worked with the Governor and his staff on drafting legislation to establish the Governor's Office of Recovery and Renewal. The legislation was subsequently passed to fund the office, which now leads the Governor's recovery efforts.
  • Steven F. Griffith Jr. and Daniel S. Terrell, Louisiana Pro Bono Attorneys of the Year. Mr. Griffith, an associate in the New Orleans office, was recognized for his work on three pro bono cases in the last year for clients who were denied wages from their employers. An associate in the Mandeville office, Mr. Terrell was recognized for his efforts related to various matters for three pro bono clients in the last year. He drafted and negotiated construction contracts for two non-profits and led the representation in immigration court of an unaccompanied child released from detention in the United States.
  • Kristine L. Roberts, Memphis Pro Bono Attorney of the Year: Ms. Roberts, an associate in the Memphis office, was recognized for her work as a regular volunteer with the Attorney-of-the-Day Courthouse Advice Clinic at the Shelby County Courthouse. The clinic, which takes place every Thursday afternoon, allows volunteer lawyers to provide free advice to the public regarding such matters as landlord-tenant disputes, consumer credit issues, bankruptcy cases, domestic relations concerns, and a host of other legal questions.
  • Matthew Sweeney, Nashville Pro Bono Attorney of the Year: A shareholder in the Nashville office of Baker Donelson, Mr. Sweeney was recognized for his pro bono service on a death penalty case. Mr. Sweeney devoted hundreds of hours of work to investigating and analyzing the case, related cases and surrounding circumstances in support of a petition for post conviction relief.

"Our goal in naming Pro Bono Attorneys of the Year was to acknowledge attorneys in our Firm who consistently demonstrate a personal commitment to Baker Donelson's longstanding support of pro bono legal services," said Jonathan Cole, head of the Firm's Pro Bono Committee. "Each of these attorneys has done work that is exemplary of the type of service this award was designed to recognize."

Through its commitment to pro bono representation, Baker Donelson provides legal services to groups and individuals who are likely to be marginalized in the legal system due to economic barriers. Over the years, the Firm's attorneys have provided a variety of counsel to many populations, including immigrants, refugees, the elderly and the impoverished. Baker Donelson has also served as a leader in providing legal service for rural communities via telephone, addressing matters concerning home ownership, landlord/tenant disputes, car payments, credit and student loan payments.

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Johanna Burkett
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