Past Winners


2016 AWARD WINNERS

Pro Bono Attorney of the Year: Corinne Price
Law Firm of the Year: Wolf Rifkin Shapiro Schulman & Rabkin, LLP
Lied Award for Most Hours for Law Firm: Kemp Jones & Coulthard, LLP
Lied Award for Most Cases for Law Firm: Kunin Law Group
Lied Award for Most Hours for Attorney: Matthew Carter
Lied Award for Most Cases for Attorney: Ishi Kunin
Justice Nancy Becker Pro Bono Award of Judicial Excellence: Judge Joanna S. Kishner
Vince A. Consul Memorial Pro Bono Award: Brandon Smith
Louis Wiener Service Award: James Jimmerson
Myrna Williams Children’s Pro Bono Award: Bob Dickerson
Public Interest Law Student of Distinction: Jonathan Chung
Ask-A-Lawyer Community Commitment Award: Bill Hammer
Volunteer Surrogate Award: Daniel Maul

100 Hour Club Members
Michelle Alarie
Shea Backus
Jeanette “Jae” Barrick
Travis Barrick
Brian Blackham
Brian Blakley
Elizabeth Brickfield
Janice Brown
Ogonna Brown
Kaitlyn Burke
Lauren Calvert
Christopher Cannon
Matthew Carter
Trevor Creel
William Curran
Shirley Derke
Bob Dickerson
Tracy DiFillippo
Sabrina Dolson
Emily Ellis
Frances-Ann Fine
Michael Flaxman
Christian Gabroy
Andrea Gandara
John George
Peter Goatz
James Greene
Robert Hempen
Nathan Henderson
Crystal Herrera
John Howard
James Jimmerson
Justin Jones
Edward Kainen
Natalie Karacsonyi
Malani Kotchka
Ishi Kunin
Andrew Kynaston
Jeffrey Lavigne
Moonee Lee
Patricia Lee
Dan Lovell
Dawn Lozano
Martin Melendrez
Michael Muehle
Jason Naimi
Tracy O’Steen
Eric Pepperman
Dan Polsenberg
Corinne Price
Carrie Primas
Benjamin Reitz
Arturo Sanchez
Matthew Schneider
Olesya Sidorkina
Abraham Smith
Brandon Smith
Jamie Thalgott
Dawn Hathaway Thoman
Eric Walther
Shannon Wilson
Adam Woodrum
Homa Woodrum
Madison Zornes-Vela


THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS

Judge Bill Henderson, Family Court
Robyn & Aldo Manzini
Bank of America

Bank of Nevada
AT&T
Boyd Gaming
Wynn Resorts
Armstrong Teasdale LLP
Southwest Gas Corporation
Barrick
Kemp, Jones & Coulthard
R&R Partners Foundation
Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie
NV Energy
Culinary Workers Union, Local 226

THANK YOU TO OUR TABLE PURCHASERS

Nevada Legal News
Bailey Kennedy, LLP
John J. Cahill, Public Administrator
Caesars Entertainment
Garman Turner Gordon
Kunin Law Group
Dawn M. Lozano
Reid Rubinstein & Bogatz
Hutchison & Steffen
Koeller, Nebeker, Carlson & Haluck
Southern Nevada Senior Law Program
Kainen Law Group
State Bar of Nevada
The Dickerson Karacsonyi Law Group
Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
Edward M. Bernstein & Associates
Dickinson Wright
Fine Carman Price
Hartwell Thalacker
Goldsmith & Guymon
Willick Law Group
Snell & Wilmer
Greenberg Traurig
Carrara Nevada
Lee, Hernandez, Landrum & Garofalo
Hammer Resolution Facilitators
Assemblyman Jason Frierson
Senate Democratic Caucus
William S. Boyd School of Law
Nevada Legal Services
Sklar Williams
Ballard Spahr
Holland Hart
The Rogers Foundation
Fennemore Craig
Kolesar & Leatham
Durham Jones & Pinegar
Republic Services
Ghandi Deeter Blackham
Haines & Krieger
Olson, Cannon, Gormley, Angulo & Stoberski
Black & LoBello
Ogletree Deakins
Nevada Justice Association
Wolf, Rifkin, Shapiro, Schulman & Rabkin
McDonald Carano Wilson
Marquis Aurbach Coffing
Holley Driggs Walch
Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP


Pro Bono Attorney of the Year

Fine Carman Price

corinne-price-attorney-of-year

Since we first began presenting pro bono awards, our most prestigious award has always been our Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award. This year, we recognized a truly remarkable volunteer.

View Corinne’s tribute video to learn more about her contributions.


Pro Bono Law Firm of the Year

Wolf Rifkin Shapiro Schulman & Rabkin, LLP

wolf-rifkin-shapiro-schulman-rabkin-firm-of-year

This year’s recipient of the Law Firm of the Year Award goes to a firm who joined the 100% club this year by committing each of their attorneys to take at least ONE pro bono case. Their attorneys adopted the Children’s Attorneys Project and provided representation to several abused and neglected children. They stepped in at a time when our waiting list was overwhelmed with children in need of a voice and we are so grateful for their commitment to this program.


Lied Awards

Lied Awards are given in recognition of the Lied Foundation Trust, a foundation which has significantly contributed to our organization for more than a decade.

Most Pro Bono Hours by a Law Firm

Kemp, Jones & Coulthard, LLP

kemp-jones-coulthard-lied-most-hours-firm

This firm contributed 1,038 hours of pro bono time in 2016.  For a 15-person firm, that means that this firm averaged 69 hours per attorney, making it stand-out as a pro bono leader this year. They assisted clients in many different areas of law including cases involving children who were abused and neglected, two appellate pro bono cases, a gaming card denial, a case involving a senior who was ripped off by a plumbing company that didn’t complete the work, an illegal repossession case, and other consumer fraud cases.

Most Pro Bono Cases by a Law Firm

Kunin Law Group

ishi-kunin-lied-most-cases-atty-firm

This firm accepted 40 new pro bono cases this year primarily in the areas of guardianship, adoption, and family law.

Most Pro Bono Hours by an Attorney

Matthew Carter
Kemp, Jones & Coulthard, LLP

matthew-carter-lied-most-hours-atty

This attorney makes pro bono an integral part of his practice.  In the past year, he has taken on two cases with the Children’s Attorneys Project. He also obtained a reversal on an appellate matter and agreed to help the client in the District Court case on remand. His dedication is evident by the fact that has worked over 150 hours on this one case alone. Despite the fact that his time is in constant demand from colleagues and clients alike, this attorney nonetheless made time to contribute an unbelievable 500 hours of his valuable, professional effort to pro bono service.

Most Pro Bono Cases by an Attorney

Ishi Kunin
Kunin Law Group

ishi-kunin-lied-most-cases-atty-firm

For the sixth consecutive year, this attorney has accepted more pro bono cases than any other lawyer in Southern Nevada. This year, she accepted 34 new pro bono cases in the areas of adoption and guardianship.


Justice Nancy Becker Pro Bono Award of Judicial Excellence

This award is given in honor of Nancy Becker, one of the founders of the Pro Bono Project and a strong advocate for access to justice. Each year it recognizes a member of the judiciary who has given his or her time, energy, and influence to encourage pro bono work and support access to justice. 

Judge Joanna S. Kishner

judge-joanna-kishner-nancy-becker-judicial

This year, we honored a judge who has been a pro bono supporter for many years. She is a member of the Pro Bono Advisory Council and has visited law firm after law firm, urging them to handle pro bono cases.  She has led numerous pro bono initiatives in the judiciary, including a new program in which pro bono attorneys’ cases were called first on the docket.  It was dubbed the “Excuse me, I have a line pass because I’m a pro bono superstar” campaign.  She has also helped to develop other fantastic initiatives such as the summer associate lunch, the pro bono mixer, and many others. Her valued insight and support has been an indispensable ingredient to the continued success of Legal Aid Center’s mission. Further, her commitment to pro bono as a jurist is not a new development; prior to her ascent to the bench she made time to represent children as a CAP attorney even while maintaining a busy practice as the managing partner of the Las Vegas office of one of the largest law firms in the world.


Vince Consul Memorial Pro Bono Award

This award is given in memory of Vince Consul, a long-time advocate for access to justice. Each year it recognizes an attorney who made a substantial commitment to a client with a civil matter.

Brandon Smith
Olson Cannon Gormley Angulo & Stoberski

brandon-smith-vince-consul

This year’s winner received this award after taking his first pro bono case with us. The case involved a widow who was in danger of losing his home due to fraud. This attorney spent several hours in district court litigation until the right outcome was achieved and his client got his home back.


Louis Wiener Service Award

This award is given in memory of Louis Wiener for his dedication in helping victims of domestic violence. Each year it honors someone who has made substantial contributions in representing victims.

James Jimmerson
Jimmerson Law Firm

jim-jimmerson-louis-wiener

This year’s recipient has been volunteering with Legal Aid Center for over 10 years. However, within the past year, he and his firm have really stepped up. He pledged to take more pro bono cases, not only for himself, but for every attorney at this firm. He undertook representation of multiple clients, including two domestic violence victims who needed assistance with custody matters. He worked nearly 150 pro bono hours on these two cases alone over the past year. Not only did this attorney accept cases, he and his lawyers also gave free legal advice at the Celebrating Pro Bono Week Ask-A-Lawyer event to give one-on-one consultations to individuals who could not afford an attorney. This attorney is recognized as being one of the best family law attorneys in the community, and this year, we thank him for being one of the best family law attorneys for our desperate clients.


Myrna Williams Children’s Pro Bono Award

This award is given in honor of Myrna Williams, who was an instrumental force in obtaining legal representation for abused children in foster care. Each year it recognizes an attorney who made an extraordinary difference in the life of a child.

Bob Dickerson
The Dickerson Law Group

bob-dickerson-myrna-wiliams

 

This attorney has shown a remarkable commitment to pro bono and tireless advocacy on behalf of abused and neglected children.

View Bob’s tribute video to learn more about his contributions.


Public Interest Law Student of Distinction

This award recognizes a law student who has made a substantial commitment to the community by doing public interest work and promoting access to justice. 

Jonathan Chung

jonathan-chung-law-student

We are so lucky to have one of the best law schools in the nation right here in our community – the William S. Boyd School of Law. Through the leadership of its Deans and faculty, the law school has been committed to public interest, pro bono, and our organization since its inception.

This year’s recipient is a third-year student who has a long history of serving others.   Prior to law school, he was a paralegal at Nevada Legal Services and continued volunteering with them during law school at the Tenants’ Rights Clinics.  He volunteered with Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada as an educational surrogate for multiple students with disabilities who needed help with the Clark County School District. He is also a volunteer at the Las Vegas Rescue Mission. He is a Public Interest Fellow at the William S. Boyd School of Law, a staff member on the Gaming Law Journal; secretary of the Federal Bar Association; and a member of the Public Interest Law Association.


Ask-A-Lawyer Community Commitment Award

This award is given to a volunteer whose tremendous commitment week after week makes the Ask-A-Lawyer Program possible.

Bill Hammer
Hammer & Associates

bill-hammer-aal

This volunteer is truly one of a kind.  He is kind and thoughtful as well as being recognized as an exemplary attorney, and has made it a priority to give back to the profession. Among his many other volunteer service pursuits, over the last year he has worked 15 shifts – 35 hours – at the Landlord Tenant Ask-A-Lawyer held at the Regional Justice Center Civil Law Self Help Center, where we operate a legal “emergency room,” which has helped nearly 50,000 people, so far this year. This volunteer provided a lifeline to some of our most desperate clients.  He’s always willing to step in at the last minute when we need a volunteer, and he often stays beyond his allotted time period to help as many people as he can. He is frequently complimented for his generous listening ear and compassion.


Volunteer Surrogate Award

This award recognizes a non-attorney volunteer who has made a difference in the life of a child with special education needs.

Daniel Maul
Durham Jones & Pinegar

daniel-maul-surrogate

This year’s award winner is an exceptional volunteer.  For over a decade now, he has been responsible for managing hundreds of litigation files as a full time paralegal; yet, he has made the time to advocate on the behalf of nine foster children just in the last year. Not only has he taken the most cases out of any educational surrogate parent volunteer, but he has consistently offered to take some of the most challenging foster care cases.  He treats these students with the same zeal, passion and dedication that he provides to his firm’s clients.

2015 AWARD WINNERS

Pro Bono Attorney of the Year: Ogonna Brown
Law Firm of the Year: Lewis Roca Rothgerber, LLP
Lied Award for Most Hours for Law Firm: Lewis Roca Rothgerber, LLP
Lied Award for Most Cases for Law Firm: Kunin & Carman
Lied Award for Most Hours for Attorney: Airene Williamson
Lied Award for Most Cases for Attorney: Ishi Kunin
William S. Boyd Award of Excellence: Christina Hixson and the Lied Foundation Trust
Justice Nancy Becker Pro Bono Award of Judicial Excellence: Judge Frank P. Sullivan
Vince A. Consul Memorial Pro Bono Award: Benjamin Reitz
Louis Wiener Service Award: Shannon Wilson
Myrna Williams Children’s Pro Bono Award: The Lawyers of Bremer Whyte Brown & O’Meara LLP
Award of Excellence: Travis Barrick
Public Interest Law Student of Distinction: Samantha Rice
Ask-A-Lawyer Community Commitment Award: Mitch Cobeaga
Volunteer Surrogate Award: Daniel Maul

100 Hour Club Members
West Allen
Paola Armeni
Shea Backus
Travis Barrick
Sarah Bassett
Eunice Beattie
Matthew Carter
Robert Cerceo
Andrea Champion
Mark Connot
William Curran
Laura Deeter
Michael DeLee
Bob Dickerson
Sabrina Dolson
Deborah Elsasser
Holly Fic
Marc Fox
Mark Gardberg
Puneet Garg
John George
Jacqueline Gilbert
Melissa Hagen
Carol Harris
Nancy Heimerle
Nathan Henderson
Marla Hudgens
Greg Ivie
Christopher Jorgensen
Samira Knight
Malani Kotchka
Malani Kotchka-Alanes
Timothy Kuhls
Ishi Kunin
Patricia Lee
Jonathan Lee
Daniel Licciardi
Michele LoBello
Dawn Lozano
Racheal Mastel
Colleen McCarty
Michael McKelleb
Monique McNeill
Michael Muehle
Tracy O’Steen
Dan Polsenberg
Corinne Price
Carrie Primas
Benjamin Reitz
Randal Shimon
Jordan Smith
Abraham Smith
Kelly Stout
Mario Valencia
Airene Williamson
Shannon Wilson
Karen Wong
Homa Woodrum
Shane Young
Meng Zhong


THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS

Robyn & Aldo Manzini
Wynn Resorts

Boyd Gaming
Bank of America
Barrick Gold Corporation
Armstrong Teasdale
Kemp, Jones & Coulthard
R&R Partners Foundation
Southwest Gas Corporation
Culinary Workers Union, Local 226
Dickinson Wright
Lewis Roca Rothgerber
Holley Driggs Walch Fine Wray Puzey & Thompson
NV Energy

THANK YOU TO OUR TABLE PURCHASERS

Reid Rubinstein & Bogatz
The Dickerson Law Group
Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
Nevada Justice Association

Kainen Law Group
John J. Cahill, Clark County Public Administrator
Kunin & Carman
Beverly Rogers, The Rogers Foundation
Koeller, Nebeker, Carlson & Haluck
Caesars Entertainment
Hartwell Thalacker
Hutchison & Steffen
Edward M. Bernstein & Associates
Nevada Legal News
Black & LoBello
Greenberg Traurig
AT&T
Southern Nevada Senior Law Program
Garman Turner Gordon
Snell & Wilmer
Bank of Nevada
Willick Law Group
Las Vegas Defense Lawyers
Reza Athari & Associates
Holland & Hart
Republic Services
Marquis Aurbach Coffing
McDonald Carano Wilson
Lee, Hernandez, Landrum & Garofalo
Canepa Riedy Abele & Costello
Nevada Legal Services
Ballard Spahr
Clark County
State Bar of Nevada
Bailey Kennedy
UNLV William S. Boyd School of Law
Fennemore Craig
Kolesar & Leatham
Children’s Attorneys Project
Senate Democratic Leader Aaron Ford
Haines & Krieger
Fox Rothschild
City National Bank
Gentile Cristalli Miller Armeni Savarese
McFarling Law Group
Duane Morris
Boies, Schiller & Flexner
Bremer Whyte Brown & O’Meara
Gordon Rees
Cobeaga Law Firm
Pisanelli Bice
Dawn M. Lozano
Durham Jones & Pinegar


Pro Bono Attorney of the Year

Ogonna Brown
Holley Driggs Walch Fine Wray Puzey & Thompson

Pro Bono Attorney of the Year - Ogonna Brown

Since we first began presenting pro bono awards, our most prestigious award has always been our Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award. This year, one attorney truly stood out head and shoulders above all others.

View Ogonna’s tribute video to learn more about her contributions.


Pro Bono Law Firm of the Year

Lewis Roca Rothgerber

Pro Bono Firm of the Year - Lewis Roca Rothgerber

This firm has a longstanding tradition of making pro bono a top firm priority. Under the leadership of Dan Waite, the managing partner for the Las Vegas office, the lawyers at this firm, have once again gone above and beyond.  In this past year, the firm accepted 36 new pro bono cases (in addition to the many cases they already had opened in prior years), and together performed an astounding 1,229 hours of pro bono services. Nearly all of their lawyers – partners and associates alike — contributed time to serving Legal Aid Center’s clients, including numerous child victims of abuse and neglect, homeowners and homebuyers victimized by real estate scams and other less fortunate individuals who had no place else to turn.

Also, in this past year, the firm’s appellate team, led by Dan Polsenberg, not only accepted a number appeals on behalf of Legal Aid Center’s clients, particularly in the areas child welfare and domestic violence, but also served as an invaluable resource, mentoring and training so many of our legal aid attorneys and pro bono attorneys– many of whom are drafting and arguing their first appellate case before the Nevada Supreme Court.

We salute this firm for exemplifying a strong culture of pro bono and for ensuring access to justice on behalf of so many of our clients.


Lied Awards

Lied Awards are given in recognition of the Lied Foundation Trust, a foundation which has significantly contributed to our organization for more than a decade.

Most Pro Bono Hours by a Law Firm

Lewis Roca Rothgerber

Lied Award for Most Pro Bono Hours for a Law Firm - Lewis Roca Rothgerber

This firm contributed 1,229 hours representing low-income clients in a range of practice areas, including abuse and neglect matters, consumer fraud, and appellate litigation.

Most Pro Bono Cases by a Law Firm

Kunin & Carman

Lied Award for Most Pro Bono Cases for a Law Firm - Kunin & Carman

This firm accepted 40 new pro bono cases this year primarily in the areas of guardianship, adoption, and family law.

Most Pro Bono Hours by an Attorney

Airene Williamson
Williamson Law Office

Lied Award for Most Pro Bono Hours for a Lawyer - Airene Williamson

This attorney makes pro bono an integral part of her practice. In the past year, this attorney contributed 392 hours on several cases, including a complex securities fraud suit, successfully settled after two years in litigation, and an unpaid wages case on behalf of several undocumented workers.

Most Pro Bono Cases by an Attorney

Ishi Kunin
Kunin & Carman

Lied Award for Most Pro Bono Cases for a Lawyer - Ishi Kunin

For the fifth consecutive year, this attorney has accepted more pro bono cases than any other lawyer in Southern Nevada. This year, she accepted 38 new pro bono cases in the areas of adoption and guardianship.


William S. Boyd Award of Excellence

This award is given in honor of William Boyd, to commemorate his extraordinary service to our organization. Each year it honors a business or community leader who has been an outstanding supporter of legal aid and pro bono services. 

Christina Hixson and the Lied Foundation Trust

William S. Boyd Award of of Excellence - Christina Hixson & the Lied Foundation Trust

It seemed very clear to us who should receive this award for the first time since presenting it to Bill Boyd. Our award winner has been a friend to Legal Aid for many years. We would not have our Center without her – in 2000, she issued a challenge grant – she would give us money if we matched it with volunteer hours – and to meet the challenge, the number of our volunteers skyrocketed. When we outgrew our building, again, she issued another challenge – this one again was met, and gave us a center to hold classes, train pro bono attorneys, and house our staff. For being a catalyst and for increasing access to justice, we gratefully honor her with the William S. Boyd Award of Excellence.


Justice Nancy Becker Pro Bono Award of Judicial Excellence

This award is given in honor of Nancy Becker, one of the founders of the Pro Bono Project and a strong advocate for access to justice. Each year it recognizes a member of the judiciary who has given his or her time, energy, and influence to encourage pro bono work and support access to justice. 

Judge Frank P. Sullivan

Justice Nancy Becker Pro Bono Award of Judicial Excellence - Judge Frank Sullivan

This year, we honor a juvenile court judge who has been serving the needs of children and families for over twelve years. He is a member of the Supreme Court Access to Justice Commission and the Clark County Blue Ribbon Panel created to make improvements to the county’s child welfare system. He is extraordinarily committed to ensuring representation and permanency in a timely manner for every child in Nevada’s foster care system.

Over the years, he has trained hundreds of pro bono attorneys to represent child victims of abuse and neglect. This year, he not only did that, but he organized and trained pro bono attorneys on how domestic violence affects their clients and cases, recruiting new volunteers to perform this important work. He is incredibly well-respected and admired for his work by everyone he comes in contact with. He always makes pro bono attorneys feel appreciated in his courtroom and never stops thanking them for their service. He is an inspiration to all of us.


Vince Consul Memorial Pro Bono Award

This award is given in memory of Vince Consul, a long-time advocate for access to justice. Each year it recognizes an attorney who made a substantial commitment to a client with a civil matter.

Benjamin Reitz
Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck

Vince Consul Memorial Pro Bono Award - Benjamin Reitz

This attorney has shown long-term dedication and determination to obtain justice for many pro bono clients in their civil law matters this year.

View Ben’s tribute video to learn more about his contributions.


Louis Wiener Service Award

This award is given in memory of Louis Wiener for his dedication in helping victims of domestic violence. Each year it honors someone who has made substantial contributions in representing victims.

Shannon Wilson
Hutchison & Steffen

Louis Wiener Pro Bono Service Award - Shannon Wilson

Over the past year, this attorney has advocated on behalf of  many victims and is a valued member of our Pro Bono Advisory Council.

View Shannon’s tribute video to learn more about her contributions.


Myrna Williams Children’s Pro Bono Award

This award is given in honor of Myrna Williams, who was an instrumental force in obtaining legal representation for abused children in foster care. Each year it recognizes an attorney who made an extraordinary difference in the life of a child.

The Lawyers of Bremer Whyte Brown & O’Meara

Myrna Williams Children's Pro Bono Award - Lawyers of Bremer Whyte Brown & O'Meara LLP

Beginning in May of this year, this law firm performed the extraordinary. After hearing of the immense need for legal assistance for abused children, this firm committed that each one of its 22 attorneys would accept a case on behalf of a child victim of abuse or neglect. It trained all of its attorneys and accepted 22 new cases. One of their partners, Peter Brown, was so moved by his client and his involvement in the case – you could hear the passion in his voice when he described the experience.

And if this wasn’t enough, the partners later rallied their colleagues in the defense bar to get involved in this work. And, before we knew it, we received a call from Loren Young, President of the Las Vegas Defense Bar, who was eager to set up a CLE training for their members which we gladly arranged soon after.

The lawyers at this firm continue to accept additional cases and plans to increase their existing requirement to two pro bono abuse and neglect cases per attorney, at all times.  What a difference one firm can make!


Award of Excellence

Travis Barrick
Gallian, Welker & Beckstrom

Award of Excellence - Travis Barrick

This award honors an individual for overall excellence and leadership in pro bono service. When we launched our Veterans Ask-A-Lawyer program in April 2014, we called upon this attorney to help due to his extensive experience in handling veteran’s benefit claims. He was eager to participate and continues to be an asset to the program’s success, always lending a helping hand to new volunteers and never hesitating to assist a veteran regardless of the legal question presented.

This volunteer is also actively involved in the U.S. District Court’s new Federal Pro Bono Pilot Program established by Chief Judge Gloria Navarro approximately a year ago. He has accepted six of these cases, devoting over 200 hours, and with the assistance of several Boyd law students, won a 6-day jury trial for one of the clients.


Public Interest Law Student of Distinction

This award recognizes a law student who has made a substantial commitment to the community by doing public interest work and promoting access to justice. 

Samantha Rice

Public Interest Law Student of Distinction - Samantha Rice

We are so lucky to have one of the best law schools in the nation right here in our community – the William S. Boyd School of Law. Through the leadership of its Deans and faculty, the law school has been committed to public interest, pro bono, and our organization since its inception.

This year’s recipient is passionate about public interest law, and child advocacy is her forte. She serves as President of her Law School’s Child Advocacy Law Association and is Coordinator for the Kids Court School with the Thomas and Mack Legal Clinic. She also participated in the Partners in Pro Bono program in which she was able to work on an appellate and divorce case.  Outside of the Law School, she also volunteers with Legal Aid Center’s Educational Surrogate Parent program where she advocates on behalf of children special education needs.


Ask-A-Lawyer Community Commitment Award

This award is given to a volunteer whose tremendous commitment week after week makes the Ask-A-Lawyer Program possible.

Mitch Cobeaga
The Cobeaga Law Firm

Ask-A-Lawyer Community Commitment Award - Mitch Cobeaga

A few years ago, Justice Douglas asked what we could do to expand legal aid and pro bono assistance to our veterans. Shortly thereafter, we asked the veteran community what was needed, and they recommended a veteran’s Ask-A-Lawyer program – and asked us to start that week. So we did. And, in this past year alone, 333 veterans were provided free legal counsel and advice.

This year’s award winner attended our first veteran’s roundtable and played a pivotal role in starting the program. Since its inception in April 2014, this volunteer has participated in nearly every session and continues to do so today. In addition to volunteering his own time and expertise by providing counsel and advice to veterans each month, he has also recruited numerous other attorneys to also volunteer. Together with the Office of Military Legal Assistance, founded by Attorney General Laxalt, and Project Salute, operated by Nevada Legal Services, we aim to honor those who sacrifice to serve our country.

You may know this volunteer as a former Air Force fighter pilot, a 40 year practicing attorney, or a legend in the Las Vegas legal community. We recognize him this year for his amazing work with veterans through the Ask-A-Lawyer program.


Volunteer Surrogate Award

This award recognizes a non-attorney volunteer who has made a difference in the life of a child with special education needs.

Daniel Maul
Durham Jones & Pinegar

Volunteer Surrogate Award - Daniel Maul

This year’s award winner is an exceptional volunteer. He volunteered to help a child in foster care who was adopted and then abused by his adoptive parents. When the child came back into care at the age of 14, he was traumatized and was acting out in school. When the school was frustrated with the child and seemed close to giving up on him, our volunteer went to work. He spent countless hours working with this student’s team at school and ensured that the school recognized the barriers that were hindering him from achieving his educational goals. He insisted that the school develop specifically-tailored accommodations to address this student’s unique situation. As a result of his work, this child is about to graduate, and our volunteer was recently invited to the party to celebrate.

2014 Award Recipients

Pro Bono Attorney of the Year: Doreen  Spears Hartwell

Lied Award for Most Hours for Law Firm: Lewis Roca Rothgerber, LLP 
Lied Award for Most Cases for Law Firm: Gordon Silver 
Lied Award for Most Hours for Attorney: Mark J. Connot
Lied Award for Most Cases for Attorney: Ishi Kunin
Lied Awards are given in recognition to the Lied Foundation which gave Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada a Challenge Grant in 2000 to pay off its building mortgage.  The grant was based on how many pro bono hours lawyers donated on a yearly basis.

Law Firm of the Year: Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, LLP

William S. Boyd Award of Excellence: Bill Boyd

Justice Nancy Becker Pro Bono Award of Judicial Excellence:  Justice Kristina S. Pickering and Judge Rob Bare
This award is given in honor of Nancy Becker, one of the founders of the Pro Bono Project and a strong advocate for access to justice, to recognize a member of the judiciary who has given his or her time, energy, and influence to encourage pro bono work and support access to justice. 

Vince A. Consul Memorial Pro Bono Award: Tracy A. Difillippo
This award is given in memory of Vince Consul, a long-time advocate for access to justice.  Each year it will recognize an attorney who devoted time to a client with a civil law matter.

Louis Wiener Service Award: Josef M. Karacsonyi
This award is given in memory of Louis Wiener for his dedication in helping victims of domestic violence and honors someone who has made substantial contributions in representing victims.

Myrna Williams Children’s Pro Bono Award: William P. Curran
This award is given in honor of Myrna Williams, who was instrumental in having children who have been abused and neglected represented in court by lawyers, and recognizes an attorney who has done an extraordinary job in giving a voice to our communities most vulnerable victims.

Award of Excellence: Bita Khamsi and John J. Piro

Public Interest Law Student of Distinction: Bailey Bortolin
This award recognizes a law student who has made a substantial commitment to the community by doing public interest law and promoting access to justice. 

Ask-A-Lawyer Community Commitment Award: Stefana Laurentia Ghita
This award is given to a volunteer whose tremendous commitment week after week makes the Ask-A-Lawyer Program possible.

Volunteer Surrogate Award: Richard Erlich
This award recognizes a non-attorney volunteer who has made a difference in the life of a child with special education needs.

100 Hour Club Members

500+ Hours

Mark J. Connot

 400+ Hours

Marc A. Fox

 300+ Hours

Sarah M. Chavez
William P. Curran
Corinne M. Price

200+ Hours

Eunice M. Beattie
Brian E. Blackham
Deborah L. Elsasser
Mark J. Gardberg
Josef M. Karacsonyi
Julie F. Kruze
Ishi Kunin
Dawn M. Lozano
Aurora M. Maskall
Christopher Reade
Benjamin K. Reitz
Shane J. Young

100+ Hours

Courtney E. Anderson
Paola M. Armeni
Shea A. Backus
Sarah T. Bassett
William H. Brown
Jon J. Carlston
Matthew S. Carter
Trevor M. Creel
Laura A. Deeter
Lindsay C. Demaree
Kerry S. Doyle
Jordanna L. Evans
Mario P. Fenu
Frances-Ann Fine
Seth T. Floyd
Puneet K. Garg
Laura Ghita
Joshua P. Gilmore
Blakeley E. Griffith
Marjorie A. Guymon
Ashley G. Hanks
Carol L. Harris
John R. Hawley
Nancy J. Heimerle Warthan
Erin M. Houston
Christopher M. Humes
Greg Ivie
Todd E. Kennedy
Bita Khamsi
Andrew L. Kynaston
Patricia Lee
Colleen E. McCarty
Rena M. McDonald
Michael W. McKelleb
Andrew D. Moore
Matthew W. Park
John J. Piro
Carrie J. Primas
Katherine L. Provost
Manita Rawat
Michael S. Rawlings
Molly S. Rosenblum
Jenny L. Routheaux
Rosa Solis-Rainey
Michael D. Stein
Kelly B. Stout
Alison Y. Tashima
Sean D. Thueson
Charles M. Vlasic
Dan R. Waite
Shannon R. Wilson

View our 2014 Sponsors!

Click here to view the 2014 Program.


2013 Award Recipients

Pro Bono Attorney of the Year: Andrew L. Kynaston

Lied Awards are given in recognition to the Lied Foundation which gave Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada a Challenge Grant in 2000 to pay off its building mortgage. The grant was based on how many pro bono hours lawyers donated on a yearly basis.

Lied Award for Most Hours for Law Firm: Hutchison & Steffen (1042) and Lee, Hernandez, Landrum, Garofalo & Blake (1049)
Lied Award for Most Cases for Law Firm: Kunin & Carman (34)
Lied Award for Most Hours for Attorney: Cindie D. Hernandez (499)
Lied Award for Most Cases for Attorney: Israel “Ishi” Kunin (24)

Law Firm of the Year: Gordon Silver

Justice Nancy Becker Pro Bono Award of Judicial Excellence: Justice James W. Hardesty and Justice Michael L. Douglas
This award is given in honor of Nancy Becker, one of the founders of the Pro Bono Project and a strong advocate for access to justice, to recognize a member of the judiciary who has given his or her time, energy, and influence to encourage pro bono work and support access to justice.

Vince A. Consul Memorial Pro Bono Award: Dan R. Waite
This award is given in memory of Vince Consul, a long time advocate for access to justice. Each year it will recognize an attorney who devoted time to a client with a civil law matter.

Louis Wiener Service Award: Laura A. Deeter
This award is given in memory of Louis Wiener for his dedication in helping victims of domestic violence and honors someone who has made substantial contributions in representing victims.

Myrna Williams Children’s Pro Bono Award: Paola M. Armeni
This award is given in honor of Myrna Williams, who was instrumental in having children who have been abused and neglected represented in court by lawyers, and recognizes an attorney who has done an extraordinary job in giving a voice to our communities most vulnerable victims.

Public Interest Law Student of Distinction: Shannon Phenix
This award recognizes a law student who has made a substantial commitment to the community by doing public interest law and promoting access to justice.

Ask-A-Lawyer Community Commitment Award: Amber Robinson
This award is given to a volunteer whose tremendous commitment week after week makes the Ask-A-Lawyer Program possible.

Volunteer Surrogate Award: Marti Ford
This award recognizes a non-attorney volunteer who has made a difference in the life of a child with special education needs.

100 Hours Club Inductees

Cindie D. Hernandez – 400 + hours
Andrew L. Kynaston – 300+ hours
Phillip C. Thompson – 300+ hours
Robert P. Dickerson – 200+ hours
Julie F. Kruze – 200+ hours
Carol L. Harris – 200+ hours
Christopher M. Cannon – 200+ hours
Kimberly M. Abbott
Paola M. Armeni
Elizabeth S. Ashley
Jason M. Bacigalupi
Shea A. Backus
Ava M. Bessel
Brian E. Blackham
Carlos Blumberg
Koren N. Boyd
Elizabeth Brickfield
Robert J. Caldwell
Benjamin J. Comin
Trevor M. Creel
William P. Curran
Laura A. Deeter
Jennifer C. Dorsey
Erin E. Elliott
Randall G. Forman
Marc A. Fox
Shawn M. Goldstein
Adam D. Graff
Kari J. Hanratty
Rena G. Hughes
Daniel P. Kiefer
Krissta Ann Kirschenheiter
Israel “Ishi” Kunin
Patricia Lee
Dawn M. Lozano
Aurora M. Maskall
Racheal H. Mastel
Michael W. McKelleb
Kari T. Molnar
Andrew D. Moore
Terry A. Moore
Tara D. Newberry
Brian J. Ramsey
Rosa Solis-Rainey
Jessica S. Taylor
Dan R. Waite
Hillary G. Walsh
Marshal S. Willick
Shannon R. Wilson
Homa S. Woodrum
Shane J. Young

Thank you to Sound Masters for their Las Vegas Video Production services!


2012 Award Recipients

Pro Bono Attorney of the Year: Patricia Lee

Lied Awards are given in recognition to the Lied Foundation which gave Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada a Challenge Grant in 2000 to pay off its building mortgage. The grant was based on how many pro bono hours lawyers donated on a yearly basis.

Lied Award for Most Hours for Law Firm: Snell & Wilmer (1167)
Lied Award for Most Cases for Law Firm: Hutchison & Steffen (47)
Lied Award for Most Hours for Attorney: Cynthia L. Alexander (295)
Lied Award for Most Cases for Attorney: Israel “Ishi”Kunin (27)

Small Law Firm of the Year: The Dickerson Law Group

Access to Justice Award: Gordon Silver

Pro Bono Award of Excellence: Marquis Aurbach Coffing

Justice Nancy Becker Pro Bono Award of Judicial Excellence: The Honorable Betsy Gonzalez
This award is given in honor of Nancy Becker, one of the founders of the Pro Bono Project and a strong advocate for access to justice, to recognize a member of the judiciary who has given his or her time, energy, and influence to encourage pro bono work and support access to justice.

Vince A. Consul Memorial Pro Bono Award: Patricia A. Trent
This award is given in memory of Vince Consul, a long time advocate for access to justice. Each year it will recognize an attorney who devoted time to a client with a civil law matter.

Louis Wiener Service Award: Corinne M. Price
This award is given in memory of Louis Wiener for his dedication in helping victims of domestic violence and honors someone who has made substantial contributions in representing victims.

Myrna Williams Children’s Pro Bono Award: John L. Krieger
This award is given in honor of Myrna Williams, who was instrumental in having children who have been abused and neglected represented in court by lawyers, and recognizes an attorney who has done an extraordinary job in giving a voice to our communities most vulnerable victims.

Public Interest Law Student of Distinction: Alexandra Varela
This award recognizes a law student who has made a substantial commitment to the community by doing public interest law and promoting access to justice.

Ask-A-Lawyer Community Commitment Award: Jenica D. Yurcic Westerman
This award is given to a volunteer whose tremendous commitment week after week makes the Ask-A-Lawyer Program possible.

Volunteer Surrogate Award: Bill Kissam
This award recognizes a non-attorney volunteer who has made a difference in the life of a child with special education needs.

100 Hours Club Inductees:

Cynthia L. Alexander
Justin R. Cochran
A. Maria Maskall
Elizabeth S. Ashley
April L. Becker
Robert J. Caldwell
Laura A. Deeter
Robert P. Dickerson
Puneet K. Garg
Tanya S. Gaylord
Michelle A. Hauser
James J. Jimmerson
John L. Krieger
Israel “Ishi” Kunin
Patricia Lee
Kathleen M. Maynard
Andrew D. Moore
Jennifer E. Mullen
Leslie M. Nino
Corinne M. Price
R. Christopher Reade
Jenny L. Routheaux
Quinton R. Singleton
Jacqueline M. Stoops
Cassie R. Stratford
Jessica S. Taylor
Phillip C. Thompson
Marshal S. Willick
Shannon R.Wilson
Shane J. Young