Pro Bono Program Alumni Newsletter

Pro Bono Program Newsletter: Thursday, April 26, 2012


I hope spring is treating you well and that you are enjoying the same beautiful weather we are experiencing in Chapel Hill. Spring has been a busy time for the Pro Bono Program and we are excited to give you an update on our semester. Carolina Law students have been busy this semester completing Pro Bono Projects. Whether they participated in a Special Trip over Winter or Spring break or they worked on a project with a local attorney, our students are committed to helping others through their Pro Bono Service. Our graduating 3L students have set new records with their service by logging more than 17,000 hours and 84% of the class completing a Pro Bono project. These 3L students are continuing their commitment to serving others by signing a pledge to continue their Pro Bono work after graduation. We also had a chance to recognize our most outstanding students, faculty, groups and alumni at the annual Pro Bono Public Awards Ceremony. Be sure to check out our outstanding group of winners featured in this newsletter.

As you can see, we have changed our newsletter format by primarily featuring photographs. If you would like any additional information about our program or the photographs you see here, please feel free to visit our website. Thank you for your continued support and interest in the Pro Bono Program. We look forward to connecting with each of you soon and as always we would love to hear from you with comments, updates, or just to say hello!


Annie Bryan
Pro Bono Program Alumni Coordinator

Announcing Our Award Winners

Congratulations to our 2012 Pro Bono Publico Award Winners. Winners were recognized during a reception at the law school on April 11, 2012.

Pictured (Left to Right): Kate Saleeby- Community Legal Project, Melissa Jacoby- faculty recipient, Charlotte Stewart- 1L student of the year, DJ Dore- 2L student of the year, Erika Jones- Graduating student of the year, Jessica Thaller- Community Legal Project, Lindsey Spain- 3L student of the year. Not pictured: Martin Brinkley- Alumnus of the Year.

The Alumnus of the Year is Martin Brinkley. Martin Brinkley is a 1992 graduate and partner at Smith Anderson in Raleigh. He is currently President of the 17,000-member North Carolina Bar Association and was the co-chair of the NCBA’s first large scale Pro Bono project: 4ALL, where NC attorneys volunteer time to answer legal questions for the public. This Pro Bono project is now an annual event. As NCBA President, he has highlighted the issue of how best to coordinate and deliver Pro Bono legal services, including naming a task force to issue recommendations on pro bono for the NC Bar Association. Under his leadership, he initiated a new Pro Bono project named Call4ALL, where private attorneys work with Legal Aid of NC clients to provide much needed legal advice. He has recruited over 400 attorneys this year for this project and is a regular Pro Bono volunteer. Congratulations to Mr. Brinkley.

Pro Bono Trips: Experiencing Our Education

UNC Law students enjoyed the chance to give back to communities across the state during the Winter Break and Spring Break Special Trips. Over Winter Break, students had the opportunity to visit Charlotte, NC and participate in one of two projects. One group of students worked with the Mecklenburg Public Defender's Office conducting client interviews, participating in jail visits, and gaining hands on experience in the courtroom. The other group of students worked with Disability Rights of North Carolina and conducted client interviews in a psychiatric residential treatment facility to explore the intersection of disability rights and public education. During the Spring Break trip, students had the opportunity to participate in trips to either Eastern or Western North Carolina and prepare wills, advance directives, and other documents for individuals in each community.

Students from the classes of 2012, 2013, and 2014 in Charlotte, North Carolina for the Winter Break Trip
1L students Donald Huggins and Anna Tison work together on a will during the Spring Break trip.
Carolina Law Students on the Spring Break Wills Trip to Eastern North Carolina.
Students pose in front of the Boone Legal Aid Office during the Spring Break Trip to Western NC.

Pro Bono Week

Pro Bono Week was a chance to thank students for their commitment to Pro Bono throughout the year. Students stopped by a table set up during lunch to enjoy snacks and drinks, sign up for new projects, and log their hours. Pro Bono Week also featured the 2nd Annual "Food Truck Rodeo" to raise money for Special Pro Bono Trips.

UNC Men's Basketball Coach Roy Williams enjoyed the 2nd Annual "Food Truck Rodeo" during Pro Bono Week.
Members of the UNC Law Community enjoyed food from the 6 food trucks that participated in the 2nd Annual "Food Truck Rodeo."

Graduating Students are Committed to Continuing Their Pro Bono Service

Members of the 2012 graduating class have signed a class pledge to participate in Pro Bono work in their first five years of practice after graduation. The class has completed more than 17,000 hours of service during their three years in law school, with more than 84% of the class participating in a project during law school-a school record.

George Carter and Katherine Barnes, members of the class of 2012, sign the Graduating 3L Pro Bono Pledge.

Introducing the New Pro Bono Board

Congratulations to the members of the Pro Bono Board for the 2012-2013 School Year.

Pictured (Left to Right): Joey Polonsky- 2L Class Coordinator, Dean Sylvia Novinsky, James Jolley- Winter/Spring Break Coordinator, Meriwether Evans- Director, Tanner Kroeger- Public Relations Coordinator, Yolanda Fair- Group Projects Coordinator, Munashe Magarira- Special Trips Coordinator, Kathryn Van Wie- 3L Class Coordinator, Annie Bryan- Alumni Coordinator, Kelly Anderson- Special Trips Coordinator, Sarah Colwell- Attorney Projects Coordinator, Jean Abreu- New Projects Development Coordinator

Thank You to the 2011-2012 Pro Bono Board

Thank you to the members of the 2011-2012 Pro Bono Board. We will miss you next year and wish you luck in all of your future endeavors.

Pictured (Left to Right): Shonaka Ellison- Winter/Spring Break Coordinator, Adam Parker- Special Trips Coordinator, Dean Sylvia Novinsky, Lauren Cranford- New Projects Development Coordinator, Bethan Eynon- Director, Tanner Kroeger- Public Relations Coordinator, Meriwether Evans- 2L Class Coordinator, Yolanda Fair- Attorney Projects Coordinator, Joey Polonsky- 1L Class Coordinator, Annie Bryan- Alumni Coordinator, Elizabeth Morgan- Group Projects Coordinator, Andrew Brown- Special Trips Coordinator. Not pictured: Carla Hermida- 3L Class Coordinator.

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

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