Quarles & Brady Providing Pro Bono Support for Legal Services Corporation Rural Justice Task Force
Milwaukee – The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP is the lead law firm providing pro bono legal assistance to the Rural Justice Task Force (RJTF) recently announced by Legal Services Corporation (LSC). More than a dozen attorneys from across the firm are involved in the task force, which will develop a report on ways to address the many access-to-justice barrier in rural communities.
“We’re proud to support the mission of Legal Services Corporation to provide underserved communities with greater access to justice,” said Michael Levey, national pro bono partner at Quarles & Brady. “Access to justice in rural communities is a critical issue and we look forward to collaborating with task force members to identify possible solutions. Many of our attorneys grew up in rural America and are motivated to address the legal hurdles that exist in those communities.”
The task force will feature three working groups looking at different issues related to rural justice.
Group one will concentrate on “Understanding the Rural Client and Legal Provider Populations, Along with the Rewards and Challenges of Rural Practice.” Quarles & Brady attorneys in this group include Cynthia Faur (team lead), Kaitlyn Fydenkevez, Michael Mostow, Shaylynn Veeder, Jacob Zerkle and Michael Zolfo.
Group two will focus on “Model Practices and Innovative Legal Service Delivery Models that Benefit Rural Areas.” Firm attorneys in this group include Fred Gants (team lead), Patrick Bitterman, Anita Boor, Megan Center, Grace Stewart and Andrew Stoker.
Group three will address “Other Possible Solutions that Address the Barriers to Rural Justice, such as Regulatory, Education or Attorney Pipeline Interventions.” Attorneys from Quarles & Brady in this group include Pilar Thomas (team lead), Brian Fullmer, Gabriel Hartsell, Greg Leighton, Tiffany Li and Tom Whitten.
The 50-member task force is an interdisciplinary group of thought leaders comprised of legal aid and human services providers, business and philanthropic leaders, educators, court professionals and members of the judiciary.
Ascendium Education Group Inc. will also be supporting Legal Services Corporation in this effort with monetary and in-kind services. Ascendium is the nation’s largest federal student loan guarantor, a leading post-secondary education philanthropy and a provider of solutions to support academic achievement, financial wellness and student loan repayment success.
LSC, created by Congress in 1974, is the single largest funder of civil legal aid in the country, supporting low-income Americans grappling with civil legal issues relating to essential human needs, such as safe housing and work environments, access to health care, safeguards against financial exploitation, and assistance with family issues such as protection from abusive relationships, child support, and custody.
LSC is headed by a bipartisan board of directors whose 11 members are appointed by the President of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.