JDC’s Right to Civil Counsel Project Gears Up in 2014

SF Board of Supervisors President David Chiu; James Brosnahan, Morrison & Foerster and 2013 BASF President Chris Kearney, Keker & Van Nest

SF Board of Supervisors President David Chiu; James Brosnahan, Morrison & Foerster and 2013 BASF President Chris Kearney, Keker & Van Nest

On November 18, 2013, a group of 40, including Jim Brosnahan of Morrison & Foerster, San Francisco Superior Court Presiding Judge Cynthia Lee, and San Francisco Board of Supervisors President David Chiu, joined JDC staff and volunteer attorneys in celebrating a successful first year of the Right to Civil Counsel Pilot Program (RTCC).

During the Program’s first year, the number of medium-to-large law firms providing pro bono full-scope representation in eviction defense cases doubled from 16 to 32.  In total, 49 firms joined 300 solo and small-firm practitioners, as well as in-house counsel, in providing full- or limited-scope representation in 950 housing cases.

During the reception, JDC’s Landlord-Tenant Supervising Attorney, Cary Gold, presented Farella, Braun + Martel and Morrison & Foerster with certificates recognizing those two firms as RTCC Leaders for exceeding their RTCC pro bono goals.  Family Law Project Supervising Attorney Stephanie Bilinski also spoke about JDC’s goal for RTCC’s second year to increase the number of firms, corporations and attorneys volunteering to stabilize children’s lives and ensure sustenance for low-income families and individuals.

The evening concluded with Judge Lee expressing her gratitude for attorneys who provide pro bono representation, emphasizing the continuing need in both housing and family court, and encouraging all attorneys to volunteer their time.

As we embark on a second year, we invite you to join JDC in making the Right to Civil Counsel a reality.  Please make a commitment to volunteer in cases involving basic human needs, including housing, child custody, sustenance, safety and health.

To learn how you can get involved in RTCC, please contact Gloria Chun, Pro Bono Manager, at gchun@sfbar.org or 415-782-8970, or visit www.sfbar.org/jdc.

You can see more pictures from the reception on BASF’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/sfbar.