National Public Service Award

The committee annually presents two National Public Service Awards. One recognizes the pro bono contributions of an individual and the other recognizes those of a firm/company.

Award Overview
The National Public Service Award was initiated in 1994 as part of the Section’s pro bono project, A Business Commitment (ABC). The ABC project was designed to match business lawyers with legal service programs, community development corporations, charitable organizations or individuals that cannot afford to hire lawyers. The National Public Service Award recognizes significant pro bono legal services that demonstrate a commitment to providing services to the poor in a business context, and recognizes the achievements resulting from the public service work for the clients and the client groups represented. The recipients of the Award will have undertaken a significant public service project(s) that provided free business law representation to the poor or to an organization that predominantly serves the poor, or improves the provision of such services.

The award will be presented on April 1, 2005 at the Section’s 2005 Spring Meeting in Nashville, TN . A complete nomination package must be submitted to the Business Law Section office by February 7, 2005.

Two Awards
Since the establishment of this Award, an increasing number of nominations have been submitted nominating either individuals or firms/companies. Because of the increasing difficulty in choosing only one nominee to win the Award, as well as the inequity of comparing an individual lawyer’s pro bono contribution to that of a firm/company, the Committee determined it would present two awards–one recognizing the pro bono contributions of an individual and one recognizing those of a firm/company.

Award Criteria
Nominees for the Award may be individuals, firms or corporate legal departments who provide volunteer business legal services to non-profit organizations that predominately serve the poor. The recipients of the Award will be selected based on fulfillment of one or more of the following criteria:
Demonstrated dedication to the development and delivery of pro bono business legal services.

Contributed significant work toward developing innovative approaches to delivery of pro bono business legal services.

Provided sustained pro bono business counsel to non-profit organizations and/or to micro-enterprises in aid of community development.

Nomination Guidelines
Nominations must be submitted electronically. A complete nomination package should be emailed to Nhu Ly and include the following information:
Nominee and Nominator–Names, addresses, firm/company, and telephone numbers

Nomination narrative–In three pages or less, identify which of the three criteria the nominee has met. Specify, the nature of the pro bono business law contribution, and identify those who benefited.

References–Provide the names of three individuals who could provide additional information–Names, addresses, firm/company, and telephone numbers

Optional Additional Materials–

a. You are permitted, but not required, to also submit letters supporting the nomination; each letter must be no more than 2 pages in length and must be submitted in electronic form.

b. Please refrain from submitting any additional materials, other than those listed in this application. If the committee determines more information is necessary to make their decision, they will contact you.

Selection Process
The Committee will review the nominations, select the Award recipients, and notify the successful nominees and nominators. Nominations that are incomplete or do not meet the criteria will not be considered. Awards will only be presented to qualified nominees.

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