Friday, April 16, 2010

Introducing the 2010-11 PBJ Board!

Pro Bono in January Executive Board 2010-11
3L Co-Chairs                                      2L Co-Chairs
Leanne Heine ('11)                              Mariel de la Garza ('12)
Michelle Smith ('11)                            Bianca Garcia ('12)

Logistics Coordinator                         Social Coordinator
Vincent Harding ('12)                         Nicolas Aitches-Gavrizi ('11)

Communications Coordinator             Recruitment Coordinator
Kathryn Olson ('11)                             Dan Clemons ('12)
(contact webmaster)         

Mentor Coordinators
John Rhoads ('11), Lindzi Timberlake ('11), Stacy Cammarano ('12)

Faculty Advisor                                  Administrative Assistance
Tina Fernandez                                   Elena Yujuico

Congratulations to all! It's going to be a great year!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Images of the PBJ 2010 trips

UT Law students during the 2010 Pro Bono in January trip to Houston worked with the Houston Volunteer Lawyers Project on a title clearance project.
Back row (left to right): United Way employee, Rishabh Godha, Justin Lipe, Adrian Jaimes, Lindzi Timberlake, Jonathan Noble, Daniel Clemons
Front row (left to right): Mary Futcher, Kelly Whitebread, Sarah Flynn, Michelle Smith, Stacy Cammarano, Nita Garg

Jonathan Noble, Nita Garg, Sarah Flynn, Adrian Jaimes, Michelle Smith.

Stacy Cammarano works with HVLP volunteer lawyers.

Kelly Whitebread

Jonathan Noble, Adrian Jaimes, Sarah Flynn, and Michelle Smith at work in HVLP offices.

Michelle Smith, Rishabh Godha, Dan Clemons, Stacy Cammarano enjoy a Rockets game!

Through Pro Bono in January 2010, 30 UT Law students also traveled to the Rio Grande Valley to work with a variety of nonprofit legal organizations. 

Some students traveled to Harlingen, Texas to work on detainee interview and asylum applications through the Pro Bono for Asylum Representation Project of the American Bar Association (ProBAR).
Immigration training with UT Law Immigration Clinic Professor Barbara Hines.

Molly Powers and Adriana Rodriquez work with a ProBAR attorney from the children's division.

Raquel Burson and Martha Buttry work with Barbara Hines on their project.

Approaching the Willacy Detention Center.

ProBAR attorneys and UT Law students mingle at a Mexican dinner.

Adrtiana Rodriguez with a lawyer from ProBAR.

Raquel Burson and Martha Buttry with Meredith Linsky, head of ProBAR.

Other students traveled to McAllen, Texas to conduct a community wills clinic with Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid. They also completed immigration document review for the Texas Civil Rights Project.
Tracey Bamburger, Jayna Genti and Mariel de la Garza conduct document review.

 Jason Cordova, Shannon Lam, Kyle Elliott, and John Rhoads.

Kathryn Olsen and Bianca Garcia hard at work.

Jayna Genti and Kelsey Snapp enjoy homemade cooking by Texas Civil Rights Project staff.

Students relax in the evening with Jenga.

Bo Liu shows off the community dorms where the women stayed.

Students gather in McAllen for a reception with judges and local attorneys hosted by the UT Alumni Association.

UT law students Shannon Sims, Raquel Burson, Lisa Hart, Tracey Bamburger, Jordan Pollack, Martha Buttry, Jayna Genti, and Molly Powers at the UT Alumni Association reception in McAllen.

Kathryn Olsen shows off her PBJ tshirt.

Katy Rosenberg and Lisa Hart visit the border near McAllen.

Students gather after work at a Mexican restaurant.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The work of PBJ and student leader Leanne Heine featured in Illinois newspaper

Pro Bono in January is making national headlines! Check out this article in the Riverside/Brookfield Landmark from Illinois, which highlights the work of one of our student leaders, Leanne Heine ('11):

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Texas Lawyer features PBJ trip on Tex Parte Blog

Pro Bono in January is featured on the Tex Parte Blog for Texas Lawyer!


Thank you to Texas Lawyer for drawing attention to the great work UT Law students will be doing next month!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Pro Bono in January featured in UT press release!

Check out our latest press!
Front row: Lawson Konvalinka ('11), Leanne Heine ('11)
Middle row: Lindzi Timberlake ('11), Shannon Sims ('11), Nick Solish ('10)
Back row: Tina Fernandez (Justice Center Pro Bono Coordinator), Mary Crouter (Justice Center Liaison)

Thank you to the UT Law Communications department!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Logistics for Pro Bono in January (PBJ) 2010

Memos outlining the PBJ 2010 trip logistics are now available for both the Houston and Rio Grande Valley trips. These important documents include the following info and more:
  • driving directions
  • carpool assignments
  • lodging
  • room assignments
  • maps
--> Click here to download the Houston trip logistics memo.

--> Click here to download the Rio Grande Valley (RGV) trip logistics memo.

During the winter break, we will be updating trip participants again with contact information of the student leaders for each trip, and additional information about the work we will be conducting. Additionally, work assignments for the RGV trip were announced by Tina in an email to participants; Houston participants will find out more about their work with the Houston Volunteer Lawyers Project later during the winter break, so please stay tuned!

Also, be sure to stay updated by subscribing to this blog (see the right column below the archives), and joining the Facebook group.

Questions? Please contact Tina Fernandez or Shannon Sims.

View PBJ 2010 in a larger map

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Brownsville Herald article highlights South Texas ProBAR

Here is an interesting new article from the Brownsville Herald about the work of the South Texas Pro Bono Asylum Representation Project of the American Bar Association. South Texas ProBAR is one of the organizations that Pro Bono in January (PBJ) students from UT Law School will be working with in the Rio Grande Valley this January 2010.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

PBJ 2010 Partner Organizations

The Pro Bono in January 2010 Trip will actually be two trips: one to Houston and one to the Rio Grande Valley.

(1) One group of students will travel to the Rio Grande Valley, in the very southern part of Texas near the border with Mexico, where they will be working with the following 4 organizations:

South Texas ProBAR
"The South Texas Pro Bono Asylum Representation Project (ProBAR) is a national effort to provide pro bono legal services to asylum seekers detained in South Texas by the United States government. The project recruits, trains and coordinates the activities of volunteer attorneys, law students and legal assistants. ProBAR is a joint project of the American Bar Association, the State Bar of Texas and the American Immigration Lawyers Association. The Texas Access to Justice Foundation provides support to this project."
South Texas Civil Rights Project (TCRP)
"The Texas Civil Rights Project (TCRP) promotes racial, social, and economic justice through education and litigation. TCRP strives to foster equality, secure justice, ensure diversity, and strengthen communities. TCRP was founded in 1990 as part of Oficina Legal del Pueblo Unido, a non-profit community-based foundation located in South Texas."
Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA)
"Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA) is a nonprofit organization that provides free legal services to the residents of Southwest Texas who are unable to afford the fees of attorneys in private practice. In eight of the counties, TRLA also provides representation in criminal cases through its Public Defender Division. TRLA also serves migrant and seasonal farm workers throughout the states of Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee and Kentucky."

(2) A second group of students will be traveling to Houston to work with another great organization:
Houston Volunteer Lawyers Program (HVLP).
"HVLP helps low-income citizens that other programs often cannot serve, such as those who may not meet the financial criteria of other legal assistance programs or non-US citizens. This is what makes HVLP unique. HVLP’s commitment to helping those in need strongly reinforces how deeply the legal profession cares about the Houston community."
Please check out these organizations' websites to find out about the extensive community work each of these groups have conducted so successfully in the past.

Additionally, HVLP has been recognized as the Pro Bono Program of the Year, and recipient of the 2009 State Bar Pro Bono Award. Congratulations!

We at UT Law look forward to putting our hearts and minds into our work with these impressive organizations in January 2010!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pro Bono in January trip applications for 2010 are available!

UT Law students will travel to the Rio Grande Valley and Houston to participate in law-related volunteer projects from January 10-16, 2010. The trips are being organized by a UT Law student organization - Pro Bono in January (PBJ) - and the law school’s Pro Bono Program.

During the trips, students will engage in law-related projects with American Bar Association's South Texas ProBAR, the South Texas Civil Rights Project, Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, and the Houston Volunteer Lawyers Program. Trip costs will be funded by the William Wayne Justice Center, as outlined in the attached application.

Participation is open to all UT Law students, but space is limited. To apply, please submit a completed Application and Trip Commitment form, 1-page essay, and resume to the Justice Center by 5 pm on Tuesday, November 10, 2009. You can find the application here, attached on the William Wayne Justice Center website, or in the Justice center, downstairs from the Jamail pavilion.

Applications are due November 10th, at 5pm.