Announcement of Spring 2013 AILA Pro Bono Heroes Honorees

AILA is pleased to announce the recipients of the first "Pro Bono Heroes" quarterly awards. For Spring 2013, the AILA National Pro Bono Services Committee solicited nominations of individual AILA members representing AILA Chapters covering four regions. After considering all of the nominees, we are pleased to recognize the following individual AILA member Pro Bono Heroes:

Northeast (CT, New England, NJ, NY, Ohio, and PA):

Jennifer Peyton, Ohio Chapter. Jenna is a solo practitioner in Cleveland, Ohio. In 2006 she was one of the founding members of a committee formed to facilitate pro bono representation for non-citizen clients who were ineligible to receive government-funded free legal services. Jenna regularly represents mentally disabled clients in immigration court and is an adjunct professor at Case Western Reserve University Law School where she and law students work on pro bono cases together. She is also involved with the clinic at Cleveland Marshall College of Law. She gives back to the immigration community by participating in refugee brief advice clinics, takes on cases pro bono and inspires other attorneys to get involved in pro bono work. She also organized attorneys to provide Christmas presents for local refugee families.

Southeast (Carolinas, Florida, Georgia-Alabama, Mid-South, D.C. and Puerto Rico):

Trina Chu, Midsouth Chapter. Trina, a solo practitioner in Shreveport, Louisiana, generously contributes her time and assistance to the Immigration Integration Program of Catholic Charities of Shreveport, where she is always "on call" to assist and mentor Catholic Charities' accredited representatives. In addition to her active immigration pro bono service, Trina takes on non-immigration pro bono clients handling family law matters through the Shreveport Bar Association Pro Bono Project. She also regularly participates in the Shreveport Bar Association's Ask-A-Lawyer clinics and youth education programs.

Central (Canada, Chicago, Indiana, Iowa/Nebraska, Mexico, Michigan, Minnesota/Dakotas, Missouri/Kansas, Texas, Wisconsin, Bangkok District & Rome District Chapters):

Cindy Medina, Texas Chapter. Cindy is a solo practitioner with Medina Law Group in San Antonio, Texas. In addition to handling pro bono DACA cases, Cindy has been involved in organizing and assisting at DACA seminars. She also does community outreach and education work where she has presented on DACA and VAWA to students and to medical professionals. Cindy also provides pro bono immigration consultations twice a week at a local community center, Avanza Community Center. Cindy’s pro bono work also reaches beyond immigration pro bono – she assisted with Avanza Community Center’s incorporation and continues to provide pro bono legal services to the community center.

West (Arizona, Colorado, Hawaii, Nevada, Northern California, San Diego, Santa Clara, Southern California, Oregon, Utah, Washington):

Stephen Manning, Oregon Chapter. Stephen is a partner in Immigrant Law Group, PC, in Portland Oregon, where he has a hearty pro bono practice focused on policy change through federal litigation and advocacy efforts. He is currently representing three clients pro bono to challenge consular actions and the consular non-reviewability doctrine. Stephen is a member of AILA's national amicus committee and for several years has worked tirelessly authoring amicus briefs on behalf of AILA. Recently, Stephen developed a litigation strategy to challenge the denial of driver's licenses to DACA applicants in Oregon and was part of a small team of advocates who negotiated a resolution without having to file suit. He also worked with local advocates to bring back driver's licenses to people without immigration status in Oregon and then drafted a FAQ to publicize the information to potential beneficiaries of this law. Stephen also promotes a pro bono culture within ILG, and as a result ILG staff frequently volunteer to lead workshops on DACA at local schools and libraries and volunteer at community events around immigration issues.

Please join us in congratulating these true Pro Bono Heroes.

Through the Pro Bono Heroes awards AILA recognizes individuals and organizations from across the country that embody the pro bono spirit, through promoting and contributing to pro bono work, taking on complex pro bono cases or handling a significant number of pro bono cases or pro bono hours.

Nominate your Pro Bono Hero for Summer 2013 today!

Cite as AILA Doc. No. 13071847.