1 1900 K St NW Washington, DC Phone: (202) locations Albany, NY Atlanta, GA Denver, CO Irvine, CA Los Angeles, CA McLean, VA Miami, FL New York, NY Rancho Santa Fe, CA, San Diego, CA San Francisco, CA Washington, DC Seoul MAJOR DEPARTMENTS & PRACTICES Corporate Environment/Energy/Product Regulation Government Contracts Intellectual Property & Technology Litigation Public Policy Real Estate THE STATS. of Attorneys: 477. of Offices: 13 Chairman: Jeff Haidet Hiring Partner(s): atlanta: Jim Levine Denver: Sandra Wick Mulvany Los Angeles: Michael Udell San Diego: Anthony Nash Washington: Christina Carroll EMPLOYMENT CONTACT Renee Meeks Director of Human Resources Phone: (404)
2 Who s Who Does the firm have one or more pro bono coordinators and/or partners? If so, how many? 1 Please provide the primary pro bono contact(s) s information below. Jessica Abrahams Partner/Pro Bono Committee Chair Phone: (202) Does the firm have a pro bono committee? How often does the committee meet? Quarterly Please describe the composition of the committee. The members of the firmwide Pro Bono Committee include the Committee Chair, Jessica Abrahams, the chairs of each of the office pro bono committees. THE SCOOP Does your firm have a pro bono policy? Can associates bring pro bono matters of interest to the firm? How does the firm decide whether to take on a pro bono matter? In deciding whether to take on a matter, the firm first completes a conflicts check. We then assess the proposed matter against the criteria identified in our pro bono policy. Has the firm signed on to the Law Firm Pro Bono Challenge? What are some of the areas of law in which your firm has performed pro bono legal work since 2012? Asylum, Community economic development, Death penalty defense, Disability benefits, Domestic violence, Education, Employment, Fair housing/tenants rights, Family law, First Amendment and constitutional issues, Immigration, nprofit corporate law, nprofit incorporation/tax exemptions, nprofit intellectual property law, Prisoners rights, Probate law, Real estate transactions, The arts and historic preservation Are there areas of law in which, as a matter of policy or practice, your firm does not perform pro bono work? ne List up to 10 of your firm s pro bono clients or partners since 2012, including legal service providers or clearinghouses. ABA Procurement Law Project American Cancer Society Children s Law Center The Coalition to Abolish Slavery & Trafficking (CAST) Georgia Asylum and Immigration Network Habitat for Humanity Legal Aid Society Jewish Family & Career Services of Atlanta Korean American Community Center of San Diego (KACC) People Accepting Challenges Every Day, Inc. (PACE) List up to three representative examples of your firm s pro bono matters since Please limit your answer to a short paragraph per matter. Michael Bramit, with others, participated in the attempted robbery and shooting of Jose Fierros while the intoxicated Fierros was in the process of entertaining solicitations by prostitutes. Bramit, an African American, was age 18 years and 1 month at the time of the 1994 shooting. He was charged with capital murder, found guilty, sentenced to death in Riverside, California and the verdict and death sentence were affirmed on appeal. Our firm was appointed state habeas counsel to represent Bramit in his state post-conviction proceedings. Bramit was raised by a crack-cocaine addicted mother who was incapable of taking care of him or his siblings. He grew up in the gang-infested neighborhoods of Los Angeles and Riverside and began stealing to provide food and clothing for his younger siblings at a young age. Bramit s court-appointed trial attorney conducted very minimal pre-trial investigation, called no defense witnesses and did not give an opening statement in the guilt phase. Only a few witnesses were called during the penalty phase, including Bramit s mother, whose testimony negatively impacted his case. Bramit is currently incarcerated in San Quentin prison. The firm s client had been having difficulty meeting his mortgage obligations and looked to outside assistance to obtain a loan modification. In what has become an increasingly common scheme, the defendants offered to negotiate with the client s bank in exchange for an upfront fee, but then took no action to obtain a loan modification. While the firm s client thankfully caught on to the scheme in time to save his property, he nevertheless lost the upfront fee of $2,000. The Washington Lawyers Committee brought this matter to the attention of MLA and together filed a suit in Maryland on the client s behalf. The defendants in this matter defaulted and a damages hearing was held in January Vault.com Inc.
3 of At the hearing MLA attorneys presented evidence of the client s damages and argued for punitive damages. The court awarded $5,000 in actual and punitive damages, as well as attorneys fees for both MLA and the Washington Lawyers Committee. MLA successfully represented the best interest of a Minor in a contentious custody battle between his parents. After spending months investigating the case, the firm represented the Minor in a three-day trial. Under a cross-examination, the mother made key concessions that influenced the court s decision. MLA also examined the Minor, who testified he would like to live with his mother. MLA then examined the father to establish that he could provide a safe and stable home to the Minor should he move in with him. After the trial, the parties and the Guardian ad litem (GAL) submitted written findings of fact and conclusions of law. Because of the mother s poor decision-making, the GAL recommended that the father become the primary custodian of the Minor during the academic year with the mother having liberal visitation and both parties having joint legal custody. Given the Minor s lack of familiarity with his father and his express wish to live with his mother, this recommendation would present an uphill battle. After 60 days of consideration, the Court issued an order implementing the recommendation of the GAL. List up to three pro bono matters that are highlights (e.g., a Supreme Court case). Please limit your answer to a short paragraph per matter. Washington, DC attorneys filed an amicus curiae brief in the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of pro bono clients Violence Policy Center and the Police Chiefs for the cities of Los Angeles, Minneapolis and Seattle. The brief supported the District of Columbia s challenge to a recent DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that invoked the Second Amendment to strike down several gun control laws, specifically DC s handgun law. (See District of Columbia v. Heller). MLA brought an action in the United States District Court for the District of Maryland on behalf of seven immigrant workers seeking to recover unpaid overtime wages. The clients, all refugees or asylees from Uganda, Chad, Ethiopia, Kenya, or Togo, worked as care givers for local group home assisted living facilities. Although the clients routinely worked as many as 72 hours per week at the facilities, they never received overtime wages. In the complaint, MLA sought to recover unpaid wages and damages under the Maryland Wage and Hour Law, the Maryland Wage Payment and Collection Law, and the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act. In October 2012, after several rounds of negotiations, the defendants agreed to pay $80,000 for unpaid wages, damages, legal fees, and expenses. Through the settlement, the defendants agreed to pay the clients more than $35,000 for unpaid overtime wages, plus nearly $34,000 in damages and $11,000 for fees and costs. On vember 5, 2012, the United States District Court approved the settlement. Two days later, the defendants paid the settlement amounts in full. MLA won a decision awarding service benefits that had previously been denied by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to a pro bono veteran client in a drawn-out appeals process. The client, a former U.S. Navy service member, had earned benefits for a period during which he had an outstanding warrant for his arrest, which had been issued without his knowledge. Based on VA regulations prohibiting the award of benefits to fleeing felons, the VA determined that the client was indebted to the VA for the amount of benefits that had been paid during the warrant period, despite the fact that the client was unaware of the warrant and did not attempt to evade the law. The client applied for a waiver of the indebtedness on equitable grounds based on his indigent status and the absence of fault on his part for the creation of the debt. The VA denied the waiver application and subsequently recovered the funds by reducing the client s future VA benefits payments. The client appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC). In August 2010, the Denver team took the case at the CAVC through the Veterans Pro Bono Consortium Program, based on Washington DC, which assigns complex cases pending before that Court to volunteer lawyers to provide help to indigent veterans in need of legal assistance. The team first was able to successfully negotiate a remand to the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA) due to the need to develop additional evidence related to the circumstances of the warrant s issuance. Once additional evidence was developed, it was submitted to the BVA along with a brief arguing why as a matter of law the VA should reverse its decision to deny the waiver out of equity and good conscience, the applicable VA standard for waiver. Ultimately, the BVA granted the relief requested, finding that a VA failure to return the benefits to the client would cause him undue hardship based on his financial inability to support himself. Accordingly, the Board ordered full payment of the benefits to which the client was entitled. Subsequent letters from the client have illustrated his tremendous appreciation of the efforts of the Denver team in resolving his longstanding dispute with the VA. The victory represents a great outcome through diligence, hard work and creative lawyering from the Denver team on behalf of this U.S. veteran client. BY THE NUMBERS What is the total number of hours that lawyers at your U.S. office(s) spent performing pro bono legal services, as defined by the Law Firm Pro Bono Challenge, in 2012 and 2013? Do not include summer associate or non-lawyer pro bono hours in your answers. Total number of pro bono hours in 2012: 14,769 Total number of pro bono hours in 2013: 16,249 What was the attorney headcount in your firm s U.S. offices? Number of attorneys as of December 31, 2012: 530 Number of attorneys as of December 31, 2013: 520 Visit for company rankings, ratings and reviews to learn what it s really like to work in an industry or company and how to position yourself to land that job. 405
4 Using the number of attorneys listed above, what is the average number of pro bono hours per attorney in your firm s U.S. office(s) during the following years? Average number of hours per attorney in 2012: 28 Average number of hours per attorney in 2013: 31 PRO BONO POINTS Does the firm offer the use of support staff in handling pro bono matters? What percentage of attorneys employed during 2012 and 2013 in your firm s U.S. office(s) did at least 20 hours of pro bono during that calendar year? Percentage of attorneys who did pro bono work in 2012: 31 40% Percentage of attorneys who did pro bono work in 2013: 31 40% SUPERVISION AND EVALUATIONS Is there partner supervision on all pro bono matters? Do partner supervisors or, if applicable, senior associates provide written evaluations of associates work on pro bono matters? Are those evaluations taken into account in determining salary or bonuses?, they are taken into account when determining salary., they are taken into account when determining bonuses. Are those evaluations taken into account in determining advancement within the firm? Is there a pro bono requirement at your firm? Does the firm give billable hour credit for pro bono work? Does the firm have a maximum number of pro bono hours that can be applied toward the billable hour target? Does the firm consider pro bono hours when determining bonuses? Please indicate how many total hours and average hours per person your summer associates spent performing pro bono in 2012 and Total hours summer associates spent on pro bono work 2012: : 589 Average hours per summer associate spent on pro bono work 2012: : 39 Percentage of summer associates in your firm s U.S. office(s) engaged in pro bono work 2012: 100% 2013: 100% Please provide any additional information about pro bono opportunities available to summer associates. We require each of our summer associates to work on at least one pro bono matter during the course of the summer. The projects vary by office. Does the firm have established programs, such as externships, that enable its associates to work in a public interest setting? What other law-related public interest and community service programs (that are not pro bono as defined by the Law Firm Pro Bono Challenge) do you offer and manage? For example, list any law school collaborations and public interest scholarships, auctions at law schools, monetary support, or fellowships. McKenna Long & Aldridge has long been committed to civic leadership, social justice and philanthropy. Several years ago, the Partners decided to institutionalize this practice by establishing a private foundation that would partner with our people and our communities and provide an outward expression of our internal values. The Foundation acts as a natural extension of the McKenna Long & Aldridge strategic priorities and purposefully reflects who we are and what we care about. The McKenna Long & Aldridge Foundation invests where we can be a part of solving problems, righting wrongs and ensuring justice. The Foundation invests where our people are actively involved. In any given month, our people contribute countless hours volunteering, offering pro bono legal support or serving on Vault.com Inc.
5 the boards and committees of local nonprofit organizations. Together, we are responsive to community issues and partner to extend the impact of our mutual commitments. The Foundation focuses giving in key areas that align with our professional strengths and partners with organizations providing tangible solutions to key problems in our local communities. 55% of the organizations supported provide legal services or assist with the promotion of justice. 17% provide essential services to children in need. 11% focus on issues of poverty and homelessness. 6% work in the area of conservation. The final 11% of contributions are awarded to those organizations outside the focus areas of the Foundation where our people are distinguishing themselves through significant involvement. Since its founding, the McKenna Long & Aldridge Foundation has provided more than $3M in charitable contributions. In 2013, the McKenna Long & Aldridge Foundation contributed more than $713,000 to 110 different charitable organizations. Together, our people, our dollars and our time invested in the following organizations, helps McKenna Long & Aldridge have a meaningful role in easing the challenges and solving the problems for those facing hardship and injustice. Below is a list of groups we currently work with, or who we ve worked with in the recent past. ACE Mentoring ACLU Denver All About Developmental Disabilities American Heart Association Lawyers Have Heart Anti-Defamation League Atlanta Habitat for Humanity Atlanta Jewish Committee Atlanta Legal Aid Atlanta Shakespeare Company Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation Autism Speaks Bay Area Anti Trafficking Coalition (BAATC) Bayhill High School Big Brothers Big Sisters Boston Medical Center Bread for the City Buildable Hours for Habitat for Humanity DC Buildable Hours for Habitat for Humanity LA California Trout Camp Pendleton Armed Services YMCA Capital Area Food Bank Casa de los Pobres CASA of Los Angeles Catholic Charities Archdiocese Legal Network CentroNia Children s Law Center Colorado Lawyers Committee Constitution Day Constitutional Rights Foundation Council for Court Excellence Day One DC Bar Foundation DC Bar Pro Bono Program DC Central Kitchen DC Volunteer Lawyers Project Denver Race for the Cure Denver Urban Debate League East Bay Community Law Center Everybody Wins! Exceptional Kids Athletics Federal Bar Council Friends of John Jay Homestead Friends of L Arche Atlanta Georgia Appleseed Georgia Association of Women Lawyers Georgia Asylum & Immigration Network (GAIN) Georgia Conservancy Georgia Justice Project Georgia Legal Services Program Gifts for the Homeless Green Law Home Aid San Diego I Love A Clean San Diego Jewish Family & Career Services Community of Caring Kate s Club KIPP Schools of Metro Atlanta LA Boy Scouts of America Legal Aid Foundation of Colorado Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of San Diego Living Coast Discovery Center Los Angeles Social Venture Partners Men s Guild Children s Hospital Metro Caring Visit for company rankings, ratings and reviews to learn what it s really like to work in an industry or company and how to position yourself to land that job. 407
6 Monarch School Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia National Center for Civil and Human Rights Nature Conservancy Neighborhood Legal Services Next Step Fitness Photo Charity Polaris Project Pro Bono Partnership Atlanta Project Grad Rebuilding Together Metro Denver Rivers Alive San Diego County Bar Foundation San Diego Volunteer Lawyers Program Senior Community Centers of San Diego Senior Connections Sentinels of Freedom Scholarship Foundation SERVE Haiti St. Baldrick Foundation St. Vincent de Paul Society of Atlanta Street Law Support Center for Child Advocates Teach for America Metro Atlanta The ALS Association Greater New York Chapter The BASIC Fund The Boys & Girls Club of San Francisco The Ear Community The Law Pipeline Program United Methodist Children s Home United Way of National Capital Area Walden Family Services Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts Washington Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs Washington Lawyers Committee of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless Whitman Walker Clinic Women s Resource Center to End Domestic Violence World Affairs Council Youth Villages Zaban Night Shelter MLA Foundation 2014 Board of Directors Clay C. Long, Senior Counsel Atlanta (Chair) John C. (Clint) Callan, Jr., Partner San Francisco Christopher F. Graham, Partner New York Maryscott Scotty Greenwood, Sr. Managing Director Washington, DC Jeffrey K. Haidet, Chairman & Partner Atlanta Christian D. Humphreys, Partner San Diego Daniel G. Jarcho, Partner Washington, DC Joann G. Jones, Partner Atlanta Kurt L. Kicklighter, California Executive Partner San Diego Mark J. Meagher, Partner Denver Michael R. Udell, Partner Los Angeles Megan McCamey, Foundation Secretary Atlanta Roger Rushing, Foundation Treasurer Atlanta What non-law related volunteer opportunities does your firm offer? For example, list any work with high school students and non-legal volunteerism for organizations like Habitat for Humanity. MLA is committed to enhancing the quality of life for the people who live in the communities in which we have offices. Through pro bono legal services, community service efforts, and the MLA Foundation, the firm supports both individuals and organizations by means of generous charitable donations and untold hours of volunteer activities. Individually our professionals serve in leadership positions as board members and committee chairs for organizations that are supporting critical needs on a daily basis. Each MLA office has its own tradition of civic service. In Atlanta, firm professionals build houses every year with Habitat for Humanity and in Washington, DC the MLA office raises money and runs for the American Heart Association s Lawyers Have Heart 10K. In San Francisco, the firm touches up the paint on senior community centers and in New York spreads hope to the homeless through coat drives. The firm assembles care packages for our troops in Los Angeles, food boxes for the hungry in San Diego, and toys for underprivileged children in Denver. The firm is also very involved with mentoring high school students in our communities. For example, MLA sponsors a Constitutional Law Class on Constitution Day, the nationwide federal program commemorating the signing of the Constitution in In the San Diego office, MLA attorneys spoke to high school students and highlighted the freedoms and rights that come with being an American. Each attorney presented real legal cases where there have been tensions over issues such as the right to bear arms, search and seizure, and free speech Vault.com Inc.
7 Additionally, MLA is heavily involved with the Street Law program. As part of the program, attorneys volunteer time to teach students about the practice of law and legal careers, encouraging them to pursue legal careers and offering support in that pursuit. MLA is the only law firm in Georgia and one of only seven law firms across the country to participate in this extremely rewarding program. Please list any special recognition or awards your firm has won since 2012 for its pro bono work. Partner Stephen Marsh was presented with the 2012 Jim Pfeiffer Philanthropy Award by the Conference of California Bar Associations (CCBA) McKenna Long & Aldridge was named 2012 GAIN Volunteer Law Firm of the Year by the Georgia Asylum and Immigration Network (GAIN) William F. Plunkett, Jr., was honored by the Federal Bar Council with the 2012 Whitney rth Seymour Award, recognizing his outstanding public service Washington, DC partner Dan Jarcho was recently elected President of the DC Legal Aid Society Board of Trustees McKenna Long & Aldridge s associate lawyers have been recognized for 100 percent participation in raising money for the Legal Aid Foundation of Colorado s 2014 Associates Campaign for Justice. MLA has been named the 2014 Champion for Children by Children s Law Center for the support of Washington, DC s most vulnerable children. For the second consecutive year, MLA is honored in the mid-sized law firm category, having donated more than $30,000 to Children s Law Center in Due to the efforts of Associates Paul Bird and Courtney Vaudreuil, MLA has been named a 2013 recipient of the Advancement in Animal Law Pro Bono Achievement Award by the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF). The award recognizes the firm for its dedication, expertise, and commitment of pro bono hours in helping ALDF achieve its mission to protect the lives and advance the interests of animals through the legal system. Women Looking Ahead News Magazine recently presented Partner Sharon Gay with its Law and Justice Award. Sharon received the award, which recognized her extraordinary accomplishments and leadership in the legal community, at the publication s gala saluting Georgia s most powerful and influential women lawyers. The Law and Justice Awards are given annually to attorneys who devote their careers to serving the public interest. Bill Ide received the Champions of Justice award honoring his unwavering support of Georgia Legal Services over the decades. Georgia Legal Services provides access to justice and opportunities out of poverty for Georgians by providing legal services in civil cases involving basic human needs such as housing, safely, health care and employment. McKenna Long & Aldridge recognized as a Raising the Bar Campaign Gold Level Donor for the firm s participation in the inaugural Raising the Bar in DC Partner Charles Pomeroy was recently presented with the Advisor of the Year award from the Southern California Jurisdiction Order of DeMolay McKenna Long & Aldridge received the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Washington Lawyers Committee in recognition of the firm s pro bono work with the Immigrant & Refugee Rights Project Partner Bill Ide received the Champions of Justice award honoring his unwavering support of Georgia Legal Services over the decades 17 attorneys from the Washington, DC office were named to the 2013 Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll Please add any additional information about your firm s pro bono program. An attorney s pro bono legal service demonstrates a dedication and professionalism that MLA highly values. Pro bono legal service will therefore be a positive factor in performance evaluations and compensation decisions. Pro bono legal service benefits the firm and our individual attorneys. The professional development of an attorney is broadened by the invaluable training and experience that pro bono work provides. Pro bono legal service also increases an awareness of the diversity of people in our communities, the problems they face, and the creative ways those problems can be solved. The personal satisfaction that comes from changing the lives of people by rendering free legal services cannot be overstated. By doing such work, we also demonstrate the firm s commitment to our communities. Pro Bono Committees We have designated the following Pro Bono Committees to oversee the firm s pro bono activities: Firmwide Pro Bono Committee Comprised of partners responsible for implementing this pro bono policy on a firmwide basis. Office Pro Bono Committees A partner in each of the firm s offices chairs an Office Pro Bono Committee of partners and associates responsible for implementing this pro bono policy locally. Each Office Pro Bono Committee should identify pro bono opportunities in the local community, meet with attorneys in the office to determine their specific areas of interest, encourage attorneys to handle pro bono matters, and assist in locating partner mentors to oversee the pro bono activities of junior attorneys. The Office Pro Bono Committee should also track the office pro bono activities and assist the Firmwide Pro Bono Committee in publicizing those activities inside and outside the firm. (A list of pro bono opportunities for each office location is located on the firm s intranet. Conduct of Pro Bono Cases The firm handles its pro bono cases with the same high level of professional commitment as its cases for paying clients. 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8 partner is assigned to supervise each pro bono matter. The firm pays disbursements necessary to the proper conduct of pro bono matters, unless the client has a demonstrable ability to pay, and agrees to pay, the disbursements Vault.com Inc.
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