Law Firm Partners
Pro Bono Service is the centerpiece of all of LWOB’s work. Pro Bono lawyers provide expertise, research, on the ground training, and guidance for LWOB projects. LWOB’s access to the finest lawyers in the world is what sets our rule of law and access to justice programming apart. Lawyers working on LWOB projects come from all disciplines, a diverse array of practice sectors, and from law firms, public interest organizations, universities and private practice.
LWOB works closely with international law firms who provide generous financial support and pro bono human and in-kind resources to LWOB programming and projects. LWOB’s Pro Bono Law Link (PBLL) program provides an array of engagement options and robust opportunities for law firm partners, associates and paralegals representing different specializations as well as in-house lawyers who want to engage in pro bono projects. We work closely with our law partners in selecting a project that fits well with the firm’s own pro bono wants and needs and then oversee the execution of the project during the firm’s engagement. Our projects range from trial observation, trial advocacy training, participation in or conducting UN workshops and panels, conference participation and drafting, technical assistance, drafting training materials and white papers and, last but not least, conducting legal research.
LWOB designs and manages project collaboratives working side-by-side with outside lawyers and law firms. After LWOB is awarded a grant for a specific project, we reach out to our law partners to determine their interest and availability in working with us. We next frame the firm’s involvement in detailed “Task Memos” that spell out the project overview, the details of the task, the number of lawyers estimated to complete the task and an estimated projected timetable. The tasking usually provides examples and templates of prior similar work product that provide clear guidance as to the form and extent of the task being described. LWOB’s in-house lawyers provide personal program oversight and management from start to finish. We meet with the outside lawyers regularly via video feed, telephone or in person to ensure that contact is consistent and support forthcoming at every stage of the work. LWOB collaborative partners treat LWOB and its projects with the same level of attention and commitment that they apply to their fee-paying clients.
Our law partners’ financial support and contribution of pro bono hours in developing and implementing our projects is critical to LWOB’s vitality and further ensures our independence and foundational underpinnings. In 2019, the law firms combined annual operational support exceeded $400,000. Their contribution of pro bono lawyer hours surpassed $5 million.
LWOB is grateful for the generous and continued assistance from Akin Gump, Gibson Dunn, Jenner & Block, Jones Day, Linklaters, McDermott Will & Emery, Reed Smith, Ropes & Gray, Shearman & Sterling LLP, and Wigdor LLP.