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Quarles Announces Recipients of Annual Pro Bono Awards

News Release

October 23, 2023 (Milwaukee) – The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP announced today the recipients of the firm’s ninth annual Gonring Pro Bono Awards. The firm is donating $1,000 on behalf of each recipient to the nonprofit organization of their choice.

The Gonring Pro Bono Award, done each year in conjunction with National Pro Bono Week, recognizes Quarles personnel who have demonstrated dedication to the development and delivery of legal services through one or more pro bono projects during a fiscal year.

The 2023 recipients are:

  • Melanie Kalmanson for her ongoing, tireless commitment to pro bono work. In addition to her extensive personal commitment to pro bono work – including now serving her second term as a steering committee member for the ABA Death Penalty Representation Project – Kalmanson is a passionate advocate for pro bono work with her colleagues. The ABA Death Penalty Representation Project will receive her $1,000 donation.
  • Monica Wright for her leadership in getting the firm involved with the Indianapolis Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic Expungement Help Desk. She began volunteering there in 2018 and introduced the pro bono project to the Indianapolis office in 2022. She has dedicated countless hours to assisting individuals in expunging their prior criminal convictions, benefitting dozens of people by opening up improved job opportunities and housing prospects. Wright’s $1,000 donation will go to the American Lung Association.
  • The ABA Death Penalty Representation Project team, led by Jim Kaplan, Melanie Kalmanson and Jake Bradley. In the firm’s most recent fiscal year, the team included more than 20 attorneys and business professionals; since taking on the case in 2014, more than 90 people at Quarles have committed more than 5,700 hours to secure post-conviction relief for the client, who was convicted of capital murder in 1992 and has remained on death row since then. Recently, the team has been preparing for a crucial evidentiary hearing scheduled for late November. The firm will make an additional $1,000 donation to the ABA Death Penalty Representation Project in recognition of the team’s work.

Other team members from the past year are Jordan Agren, Austin Anderson, Haley Augur, Caroline Calavan, Martin Childs IV, Amanda Collins, Jennifer Dedolph, Adrielli Ferrer, Jenny Fik, Jason Glanzer, Elizabeth Grande, Kendall Griffin, Shaniya Johnson, Debra Millinowisch, Scott Nolan, Laura Olsen, Samantha Orwoll, Nicole Perkins, Emily Plakon, Anthony Pusateri, Christopher Skey, Gabriela Timis, Rebecca Wilt, Julia Wischmeier and Christian Yingling.

“A commitment to giving back to our communities by doing our part to bridge the justice gap in this country has been central to the Quarles culture for decades,” said Mike Aldana, firm managing part and chair of the executive committee. “We are grateful for the leadership demonstrated by this year’s honorees and proud of their commitment to making a difference for those in need.”

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