MINNEAPOLIS, May 2014 – Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi L.L.P. is proud to announce that the National Legal Aid and Defender Association (NLADA) has honored the firm with a 2014 Beacon of Justice Award. The distinction is in recognition of the firm’s dynamic partnership with the Minneapolis campus of Jeremiah Program, a national non-profit that provides housing, early childhood education, and support for career-track education for single mothers.
This year, NLADA is awarding its annual Beacon of Justice Award to law firms that have devoted considerable resources to creating and implementing innovative strategies to improve life outcomes for those with low income.
Since 2012, Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi L.L.P. has provided bi-monthly pro bono legal clinics at Jeremiah Program’s Minneapolis campus. Key benefits of the legal clinic include systematic access to legal counsel for women juggling motherhood, college studies and the challenges that qualified them for Jeremiah.
The firms’ advance planning, collaboration, and ongoing relationship with Jeremiah staff allows the attorneys to be prepared for clients’ legal issues when they meet and to provide remote and/or in-person follow up. Jeremiah’s Life Skills Coaches participate in the clinic and, due to their involvement, the Coaches have increased knowledge about legal issues that commonly impact participants and can better advocate for all participants.
Beyond legal services, attorneys and other firm members have also cooked meals, donated welcome baskets and other items for new Program residents, and have included residents in opportunities to networking in the community.
The impetus for the firm's clinic emerged from a collaboration between Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi L.L.P., Call for Justice, Lindquist & Vennum (which adopted the Jeremiah Program’s St. Paul Campus), and the Volunteer Lawyers Network.
“It’s been our privilege to support the Jeremiah Program with pro bono legal services and meaningful assistance to help change lives and make a difference,” said Denise Rahne, trial attorney and pro bono committee member at Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi L.L.P.
NLADA will officially present the Beacon of Justice Award to the firm during its Exemplar Awards Dinner on Thursday, June 26 at The Mayflower Renaissance Hotel in Washington, D.C.