2023 Annual Volunteer Appreciation Event

On a rainy September evening, VLP staff, volunteers, and members of the legal community gathered at MCLE to celebrate Judge Edward M. Ginsburg Gideon's Trumpet Award honoree Hon. Ernest Sarason, (Ret), and Denis Maguire Award honorees, Kirkland and Ellis, LLP, Morgan Brown, Esq. and David Ferrera, Esq. VLP Consumer and Bankruptcy Staff Attorney Grace Brockmeyer, who accepted the award on Judge Sarason's behalf, called him a "true Champion of Justice." Grant Bowen who accepted the Denis Maguire award on behalf of his firm Kirkland and Ellis, stated that VLP's Family Law and Guardianship Clinic gives his firm an opportunity to engage in the most personal level of legal service. assisting low-income individuals because they see how it makes a difference in the clients' lives. The evening's guest speaker, Boston Bar Association President Hannah L. Kilson Esq., mingled with guests before and after her inspiring speech, reminding lawyers of their special set of skills and "that we have a responsibility to use those skills for the betterment of the community whenever, wherever, and however we can." The event celebrated two years of our staff and volunteer community efforts, resulting in more than 15,000 low-income people served and our 540+ Pro Bono attorneys logging in almost 12,000 hours. View the annual report here

Voices of Democracy: Ensuring Justice for All

Phoebe Dantoin, Esq.

Sullivan & Worcester, LLP

Olivia Sedita, Esq.

Dechert, LLP

Michael Gaines, Esq.

Block & Leviton, LLP

VLP is fortunate to have a panel of Pro Bono volunteer attorneys who are committed to ensuring justice for all. Our volunteers are often the voice of our clients, this month, we shift our focus to celebrating our Pro Bono attorneys by listening to their stories and hearing their voices. Get to know these three outstanding PBAs as they share their voices in a Q&A session with VLP. Volunteer Phoebe Dantoin, Esq., often assists at our Family Law clinic, Volunteer Olivia Sedita, Esq., frequently helps at our Housing Lawyer for the Day clinic and Volunteer Michael Gaines, Esq.’s work has been impactful in our Consumer unit. Their work is worth noting and has made a difference for our clients, our organization, and justice for all. 

Clinic Sign-ups

Join us for an upcoming clinic, whether in-person or remote. VLP remains flexible for our clients and volunteers. Volunteering and shadowing opportunities are available at all of our clinics in the Housing, Landlord Advocacy, Wage Theft, Family Law & Guardianship, Appeals, and Consumer units.

Sign up below:

In Person
Wage Theft Clinic
Consumer Debt Clinic
Housing Lawyer for the Day Clinic
Family Law and Guardianship Clinic
Appeals Clinic
Landlord 1-on-1 Advice Clinic
Housing Answer & Discovery Clinic
Family Law and Guardianship Clinic

VLP Pro Bono Case Win

VLP Pro Bono volunteer and law student, Sydney Thomas, argued at a regular and remand hearing, resulting in a favorable decision for her client. Under the supervision of Unemployment and Wage and Hour Staff Attorney Elizabeth Mason, Sydney Thomas represented a Domestic Survivor and a single mother at a denial hearing with the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA). The client was fired for insubordination. At the regular hearing, the review examiner reversed the decision and found that the client was eligible for unemployment because her insubordination protected her from circumstances, she wanted to avoid due to a history of domestic and childhood sexual abuse. The client received a lump sum payout of past benefits totaling $25,262 and two additional weeks of benefits at $974/ week. The client's former employer subsequently appealed the decision to the DUA Board of Review, which accepted the case for review and ordered a remand hearing. The Board of Review affirmed the hearing decision, finding that although the client engaged in misconduct, her "abuse history constituted mitigating circumstances with her actions in the immediate moment being beyond her control." As such, the review examiner affirmed the award of benefits to the client. With VLP's help, the client obtained $27,210 in benefits. A job well done by Pro Bono volunteer Sydney Thomas and the Unemployment unit! 

A Warm Welcome to our Newest VLPies

Gabrielle (Gabby) Young graduated from Boston University in May of 2023 with a BA in Political Science. Gabby was an intern in the Bankruptcy Unit and is excited to have returned to VLP in the summer of 2023 as an Employment and Consumer paralegal. During her free time, Gabby loves to exercise and picnic with her friends, and in the winter months, she spends many weekends skiing in her favorite East Coast mountains.

We are so thrilled to have her on board! If you, or someone you know, are interested in joining the VLP team, you can check out our open positions here.

Upcoming Trainings

Family Law 104

November 3, 2023

10 - 11:30 am

Sign Up

Guardianship of Minors

November 16, 2023

10 - 11:30 am

Sign Up

Guardianship of Incapacitated Persons

December 1, 2023

10 - 11:30

Sign Up

Aug. 2023 - Oct. 2023 Community Impact

Volunteer with us! Join our expansive network of dedicated professionals by clicking here to signup, or email VLP’s Pro Bono Manager Emelia Andres at [email protected]

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