The Law School and Robert Brothers, ’11, honored by awards from Texas Access to Justice Commission
The University of Texas School of Law and one of its recent graduates were honored by awards from the Texas Access to Justice Commission on November 14, 2011. Robert Brothers, ’11, received the Law Student Pro Bono Award along with Sarah Loeffler, a recent graduate of the University of Houston School of Law. The Law School received the Commitment to Service Award.
Brothers was recognized for his three semesters of volunteer work with the Law School’s Domestic Violence Clinic, for which he continued providing help even after completing the bar exam. According to the ATJ statement on his award, Brothers “demonstrated a strong commitment to helping victims become thriving survivors.” He also served as vice president of the Survivor Support Network, a law school organization that supports victims with non-legal needs such as providing emergency funding and moving assistance. The ATJ Law Student Pro Bono Award was established in 2007 to recognize a Texas law student who has demonstrated his or her commitment to the delivery of legal services to poor and low-income Texans. Nominations for the award were solicited from each of the nine Texas law schools; legal services programs; and law students themselves. The award includes a $2,000 stipend from the ATJ Commission.
The Law School received the Commitment to Service Award for “significantly expanding its access to justice efforts through the creation of financially supportive initiatives, expansion of clinical courses, and by establishing a pro bono program designed to educate students about public service and instill a commitment to work toward equal justice long after graduation.”
The ATJ Commission specifically mentioned the creation of the Justice Corps, a post-graduate fellowship program that sends new alumni to work with nonprofit legal organizations serving underrepresented individuals and communities across the world. The law school also implemented a loan repayment assistance program, conducts one of the largest clinical programs in the country involving over 450 upper-class students, and created a Pro Bono Program in 2009 that now includes a pro bono pledge during new student orientation. The ATJ Law School Commitment to Service Award recognizes a law school that most prominently advances the delivery of legal services through clinics, public interest programs, student involvement and other initiatives. Nominations for the award were solicited from each of the nine Texas law schools, legal services programs in Texas, local bar associations, alumni and law students.