Pro Bono Program Alumni Newsletter

Pro Bono Program Newsletter: Monday, December 1, 2014

November Pro Bono Update

While the Fall semester draws to a close, the end of classes draw near and finals loom. However, students have already been preparing for some great Pro Bono experiences that will take place during Winter Break! Students had a chance to apply for the Winter Break Trip to Cherokee and Asheville, and they could also sign up for Winter Break Projects to help meet unmet legal needs both remotely and on site. Examples include helping with a Health Care Navigator Clinic in Charlotte, research projects in a variety of areas of law, and client-centered work. Legal service organizations, non-profits, and private firms are sponsoring and hosting students. This year, UNC Law will carry on the tradition of bringing Pro Bono legal services to populations in need.

Also, if you, as alumni, would like to learn how you can get involved Pro Bono, please visit the Alumni Pro Bono Opportunity Portal, created by the UNC Pro Bono Program to connect alumni with different ways to meet unmet legal needs. Practicing attorneys are able to search for existing Pro Bono Projects in need of attorney volunteers. Legal service providers are also encouraged to submit Pro Bono projects in need of attorney volunteers.

As always, if you would like any additional information about the program or the photographs you see here, please feel free to visit our website. Thank you for your continued interest in the Pro Bono Program!


Amanda Colley
Pro Bono Program Alumni Coordinator

Featuring Our Alumni

Orla O'Hannaidh Name and Year of Graduation from UNC Law: Orla O’Hannaidh (previously Buckley), 2012

Place of Employment: Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, LLP (RTP)

Area of Practice: Intellectual Property Transactions

Favorite class/professor in law school: Professor Conley’s IP class

Pro Bono Experience in Law School: Staff Member and President of the UNC Innocence Project; volunteer at the Women’s Center (now Compass Center) through the Community Legal Project

What inspired or prompted you to start doing pro bono work? I had many opportunities to get involved in the community and to do pro bono work during law school. As a native of the Triangle area, I found the pro bono work especially rewarding. I really enjoyed and valued my pro bono experience as a law student and I was committed to continue pro bono work as a licensed attorney.

What does your current pro bono practice look like? My firm has a partnership with the Durham Rescue Mission where Womble Carlyle attorneys assist residents in expungement and drivers’ license restoration. Along with my colleagues and the help of local law students, I conduct client in-take and provide legal assistance to the residents. I also volunteered at several immigration clinics to assist clients in submitting applications. I work on pro bono matters relating to IP issues, such as advising pro bono clients on copyright and music licensing issues or drafting privacy policies.

Favorite or Most Significant Pro Bono Experience: In my regular practice as a transactional IP attorney, I do not appear in court or have day-to-day exposure to non-IP related matters and clients. My pro bono work has given me experience in new areas of law and the opportunity to work with and meet new members of the community. I really enjoy this aspect of my pro bono practice.

Read more.

Winter Break Sign Ups

Bright and early in the morning on Thursday, November 13, students had already been eagerly lined up for hours in anticipation of signing up for the Winter Break Pro Bono Projects. Students had camped out, some as early as 9 p.m. the evening before, to ensure that they secured the projects they wanted to complete over Winter Break. They lounged in chairs, some with pillows, while enjoying the Pro Bono Unmet Legal Needs at Home exhibit down the fourth floor hallway. Later in the morning, breakfast items were available for purchase, with proceeds supporting the Winter Break Trip.

Read more.

Winter Break Project Sign Ups
Students line up hours in advance to secure the Winter Break projects they want.
Winter Break Project Board
The Winter Break Project Board eagerly awaits students to sign up for each project it represents.
Sam and Molly WB Project Sign Ups
Pro Bono Board Members Molly Gross (2L Class Coordinator) and Samuel Williams (Attorney Projects Coordinator) pose before the nearly completed project board.

Save the Date!

CPILO Save the Date

Dear Alumni,

The Carolina Public Interest Law Organization (C-PILO) of UNC Law cordially invites you to attend our annual auction on January 29, 2015, at 7 p.m. in the great room at Top of the Hill on Franklin Street in Chapel Hill. The proceeds fund grants for law students who are interning or externing in public interest. An annual tradition since 1997, the auction is a signature Carolina Law event where professors, alumni, and current students come together for a night of food, bidding, and fellowship. We encourage you to celebrate Carolina Law’s proud commitment to public interest and to students who work hard to better the community we live in. Last year, we raised $18,000 with spectacular auction items such as Great Smoky Mountains Getaway, Outer Banks Resort Stay, Camping expedition rental, Whitewater Rafting Adventure, and slope tickets to the Appalachian Ski Resort. This year our goal is to raise $20,000 and we have exciting auction items including gift certificates for wine tasting, white-water rafting, and performances at the American Dance Festival. We also have tickets to the Carolina Ballet and to various N.C. sporting events.

Come connect with your former professors, fellow alumni, and future UNC lawyers. There will be delicious hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar, special door prizes, raffles, and giveaways for alumni. If you would like to reserve your place, please contact our vice president Annie Kouba, at . Donations are tax-deductible and we strongly encourage your support! Auction tickets are $13 in advance and $15 at the door.


The UNC Law CPILO Board

CPILO Auction

CPILO Auction

To learn more about the Pro Bono Program, including how you can be involved, email

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