Two Firms, Seven Individuals Receive Pro Bono Awards

Wednesday, December 1, 2004 - 01:00

Two law firms and seven individuals are this year's recipients of the Cornerstone Award presented annually by the Lawyers Alliance for New York. The presentation ceremony took place on November 17 at the Pfizer Corporate Conference Center in New York City.

"Thanks to New York's pro bono attorneys and our partnership with the city's top law firms and corporate legal departments, hundreds of nonprofits have access to the expert legal counsel they need to accomplish their missions and better serve New York City's low-income communities," said Elizabeth Guggenheimer, legal director of Lawyers Alliance.

Lawyers Alliance is a leading provider of business law services for nonprofits dedicated to serving low-income neighborhoods.

This year's institutional awardees are:

  • Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal LLP for the firm's increased and sophisticated pro bono legal services offered to nonprofits that are improving the quality of life in low-income neighborhoods, including organizations that are building a better future for inner city children as well as nonprofits that are stimulating economic development across New York City.

  • Winston & Strawn LLP for the firm's continued and meaningful pro bono business law services to nonprofits, including top quality assistance to community groups that serve immigrant populations and organizations that are developing affordable housing in New York City's neighborhoods.

This year's individual awardees are:

  • Ashley R. Altschuler, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, for advising Council of Senior Centers and Services of New York City on a variety of corporate governance, contracting, and other legal issues, including the development of the Homeplate Senior Nutrition Marketplace for New York, an Internet-based venture through which Council members will purchase products at sizeable discounts.

  • David L. Cohen, formerly of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, for his service to A Family Place, Ifetayo Cultural Arts Facility, New York Professional Advisors for Entrepreneurs, and Sustainability Education Center, on incorporation, intellectual property, liability and other legal matters.

  • Bradley G. Kulman, Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP, for his ongoing service as pro bono counsel to Urban Education Exchange and Health People on intellectual property, employment, real estate, corporate governance, and reporting issues.

  • James P. McIntyre, Davis Polk & Wardwell, for transactional legal assistance that helped Hour Children to acquire and rehabilitate an eight-family property that will provide supportive housing to formerly incarcerated women and their children, families at risk of homelessness.

  • Joseph E. Suh, McDermott Will & Emery LLP, for his eight years of service to Coalition for Asian American Children and Families, an advocacy organization that has benefitted from his counsel on a variety of legal issues, including the development of leases, independent contractor agreements, and other legal documents.

  • Lisa Swanson, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP, for advising numerous nonprofits on proper personnel management, on matters such as drafting employee handbooks, representing employers during government investigations, and providing legal advice on personnel decisions.

  • Brian L. Taylor, Dewey Ballantine LLP, for representing Hudson Guild as it negotiated a complex long-term lease for its Eliot Center with the New York Housing Authority, which will allow Hudson Guild to use the space rent free and undertake a major renovation of its main building so it can provide enhanced programs and services.

"Lawyers Alliance for New York applauds the 2004 Cornerstone Award recipients for contributing their time, skills, and commitment to community organizations that are creating new opportunities for low-income New Yorkers" said Christine D. Rogers, a partner at Arnold & Porter LLP and chair of the board of directors of Lawyers Alliance for New York. "These lawyers and firms represent the very best of the legal profession."