Public interest law advocates gathered at the Louisiana Supreme Court last month for the 2012 Pro Bono and Children’s Law Awards Ceremony sponsored by the Louisiana State Bar Association. The Law Center’s Juvenile Defense Clinic, clinical faculty and one recent law center graduate were recognized at the awards ceremony for their contributions to public interest.
The LSBA honored the Law Center’s Juvenile Defense Clinic with the 2012 Children’s Law Award. This clinic offers third-year law students the opportunity to represent juvenile defendants in delinquency proceedings before the East Baton Rouge Parish Juvenile Court. Founded in 2004 by Professor Lucy McGough as the Juvenile Representation Workshop, the course became a full clinic in 2009 with assistance from a Models for Change grant provided by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur foundation. Hector Linares, Assistant Professor of Professional Practice, and Sean Collins, Adjunct Clinical Professor, currently teach the clinic. Although only three years old, the clinic has already increased the statewide capacity of the juvenile justice system by producing practice-ready juvenile advocates and indigent defenders that upon graduation have gone on to work at public defender offices and child advocacy organizations across the state.
Ken Mayeaux, Assistant Professor of Professional Practice and Director of the Law Center’s Immigration Clinic, received the Pro Bono Century Award for his work with the Baton Rouge Bar Foundation Pro Bono Project. This award is presented to those extraordinary attorneys who have demonstrated exemplary commitment to the ideals of the profession by providing over 100 hours of volunteer pro bono services during the past calendar year through an established pro bono organization. Mayeaux joined the LSU Law faculty in fall 2009.
The Pro Bono Publico Award was awarded to Scott Gaspard, LSU Law Adjunct Clinical Professor in the Family Mediation Clinic, for contributing over 400 hours of pro bono service, primarily through the Baton Rouge Bar Association’s Thirst for Justice and Ask-a-Lawyer programs. A graduate of the LSU Law Center, Gaspard has taught in the Family Mediation Clinic since 2008.
Lindsay Jarrell, Class of 2012, received the Law Student Award for her work with the Law Center’s Juvenile Defense Clinic and being a major leader in the Law Center’s efforts to build a culture of pro bono service among its students. Jarrell’s commitment to public service began before she started law school. As an undergraduate at LSU, Jarrell co-founded AIDS Reach, which supports students and young people dealing with AIDS in the Greater Baton Rouge area. As a law student, Jarrell volunteered for many pro bono projects, including projects sponsored by Equal Justice Works, the Law Center’s Public Interest Law Society, the student chapter of the Louisiana Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and Volunteers in Tax Assistance. Jarrell has accepted a job with the Baton Rouge Public Defender’s Office.