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The Pro Bono Award recognizes the contributions by members of the legal community who have demonstrated a commitment to the provision of pro bono legal services. The Pro Bono Award is given annually to an individual Pro Bono Attorney of the Year and a Pro Bono Law Firm or Organization of the Year.

The following criteria will be considered in determinig a recipient for this award:​

  • ​Nominee is either: an individual attorney in private practice, corporate practice, or employed by a government office or agency or a private law firm, group, or organization;
  • Nominee has demonstrated a dedication to the development and delivery of legal services to the poor;
  • Nominee has contributed significantly toward developing innovative ways to deliver volunteer legal services; 
  • Nominee has participated in an activity that resulted in satisfying previously unmet legal needs or extending legal services to an underserved segment of the population; 
  • Nominee has advocated in pro bono cases that favorably affected the provision of services to the poor; 
  • Nominee has worked on legislation that contributed substantially to legal services to the poor; 
  • Nominee has made an outstanding effort to provide legal services to an underserved segment of the population; or
  • Nominee has any combination of these contributions. 
  • Nominee may not be a current voting member of the Legal Assistance Committee. 
  • Nominee for a law firm, group, or organization may not be a Civil Legal Service Provider. 

Nomination Guidelines

Nominations must be received by January 31st of each year and will be reviewed and considered by the Legal Assistance Committee. Please provide the following: 

1) A completed nomination form, or fillable nomination form. Please provide both the nominator and candidate information requested. 

2) A written summary of the pro bono service or services provided by the nominee or a description of the nominee's commitment to the provision of pro bono civil legal services. 

3) Letters of support or recommendation from colleagues, persons with whom the nominee has worked in providing pro bono services, or from clients who have been helped by the nominee

4) Optional supporting documentation: The nominee's resume or curriculum vitae; Newspaper, newsletter, or magazine articles documenting the nominee's service, or brochures about the nominee's work or the organization with which the nominee is affiliated;

Deadline for all nominations is January 31, 2024. ​Please send your nomination materials to:

Legal Assistance Committee
C/o Sarah Watson
State Bar of Wisconsin
P.O. Box 7158
Madison, WI 53707-7158


Pr​​evious Award Winners
Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Recipients

2023 Jennifer Binkley
2022 Maggie Niebler-Brown, Milwaukee
2021 Rebecca Salawdeh
2020 Victor Forberger, Madison
2019 Alexander Lodge, Madison
2018 Talita Bornholdt, Madison
2017 Brenda Lewison, Milwaukee
2016 Douglas Klingberg, Wausau
2015 Dera Johnson-Tracy, Madison
2014 Andrew Declerq, Madison
2013 Michael Lueder, Milwaukee
2012 Cody Wagner, Madison
2011 Michael Gengler, Monticello
2010 David Harth, Madison
2009 Mark Borns, Madison
2007 Earl Munson, Madison
2006 Susan Jaskukski, Milwaukee
2006 Patrick Patterson, Fox Point
2006 Colleen Ball, Wauwatosa
2005 Katherine Perhach, Milwaukee
2005 Jessica Abbott, Brookfield
2004 Roy Froemming, Madison
2003 Sara Buscher, Appleton
2003 Timothy J. O'Brien, New Richmond
2002 Megan M. Rosborough, Stoddard
2002 Rachel A. Schneider, Milwaukee
2001 Donald A. Schoenfeld, Milwaukee
2000 James H. McDermott, Madison
1999 Howard Eisenberg, Milwaukee
1999 Maureen Feran Freedland, La Crosse
1998 Ernesto Romero, Milwaukee
1997 Tom Sleik, La Crosse
1996 Sonja A. Lee, Madison
1995 Stacy Gerber Ward, Milwaukee
1995 L. William Staudenmaier, Milwaukee
1994 Richard S. Gondik, Jr., Superior
1993 Joseph S. Neterval, Milwaukee
1993 Debra J. Procknow, Kenosha
1993 David B. Russell, LaCrosse

Pro Bono Law Firm or Organization of the Year Recipients

2023 Rural Access to Justice
2021 Reinhart Boerner Van Dueren S.C.
2019 Godfrey & Kahn
2018 Perkins Coie
2016 Merchant & Gould
2015 Quarles & Brady LLP (Madison office)
2014 Gass Weber Mullins LLC
2013 UW Veterans Law Center
2010 Gennerman Mazzie-Briscoe Law Group, Madison
2009 Milwaukee Domestic Abuse Restraining Order Teams - Quarles & Brady LLP, Reinhart; Boerner Van Deuren, S.C.; Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek, S.C.
2007 Heller Ehrman LLP, Madison
2004 Dane County Delivery of Legal Services Committee
2003 Winnebago County Bar Association
2002 Davis, Birnbaum, Marcou, Seymour & Colgan, LLP, La Crosse
2001 Bell, Gierhart, & Moore SC, Madison
2000 Robinson, Peterson, Berk & Cross, LLP, Appleton
1999 Angel & Angel, S.C., Dodgeville
1998 Murphy & Desmond, Madison
1997 Glenn, Hoff, Hoff & Lambert SC, Appleton
1996 La Crosse County Bar Association
1995 Quarles & Brady LLP
1994 Brown County Bar Association
1993 DeWitt Porter, Madison​