News Tag: Legal Aid Academy


May 24, 2019

Celebrating Ten Years of A+ Training

For the past ten years, the CBF Legal Aid Academy has provided free, high-quality training and professional development opportunities for hundreds of legal aid attorneys to develop valuable skills so that they can better serve our community. With the help of generous pro bono contributions of time and expertise from attorneys, law firms, and CLE providers, the Academy has been able to continuously provide these professional development opportunities for Chicago’s legal aid community.

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October 16, 2018

Top of the Class: The CBF Legal Aid Academy

Chicago’s pro bono and legal aid organizations are top notch, teeming with some of the best lawyers in their respective fields. Even the most dedicated legal aid lawyers in these organizations, however, can face daunting challenges to making long-term commitments to these vital careers.

Financial challenges which can be very real for lawyers making relatively modest […]

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October 12, 2018

Clearing Voting Barriers for Chicagoans with Disabilities

Imagine you are excited about casting your ballot on Election Day and are turned away simply because you have a disability. Or imagine having to cast your ballot where other voters can see exactly how you vote.

Cynthia, a voter with a disability, was unable to use the accessible electronic voting machine at her polling place because the election judges did not know how to operate it. She was forced to cast her ballot sitting at a table in plain view of other voters with absolutely no privacy. Her only other option was to not vote at all. Cynthia’s experience illustrates the type of barriers people with disabilities routinely face when they seek to vote but are denied access to the election process.

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June 8, 2016

Unlimited Legal Training Thanks to PLI and Leonard McKenzie

Legal Aid Academy Colleague Corner
By Meg Benson, Co-Chair of the CBF Legal Aid Academy Advisory Committee

Leonard McKenzie loves legal aid lawyers. At least in the professional sense. He admires the work they do and wants to help them help their clients better.

Leonard is the Scholarship/Pro Bono Privileged Membership Manager for the Practising Law Institute, a national continuing legal education and professional training organization in New York. PLI offers attorneys hundreds of accredited CLE programming, both in person, on the web and on demand. Many programs are relevant to legal aid and pro bono attorneys. In fact, just a quick glance at the current schedule shows programs for working with homeless youth, serving on a nonprofit board, consumer law for pro bono clients, defending immigration proceedings and a public interest boot camp. There are scores more.

Leonard’s job is to make sure legal aid lawyers get these programs for free. Yes, free.

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February 8, 2016

The Honorable Mark A. Drummond: A Triple Threat

Legal Aid Academy Colleague Corner
By Meg Benson, Co-Chair of the CBF Legal Aid Academy Advisory Committee

Mark Drummond is a trial lawyer, a jurist and a teacher. All at once.

Judge Drummond has been on the bench in west-central Illinois’ 8th Judicial Circuit since 1999. Sitting in Quincy, on the banks of the Mississippi River, he presides over both civil and criminal trials.

We know that once an attorney puts on that black robe, he or she has to put aside the advocacy of litigation to remain impartial and objective. However, many attorneys believe that, Once a trial lawyer, always a trial lawyer and, underneath this judge’s black robe, beats the passionate heart of a trial attorney. As a result, in addition to serving as a judge in Quincy, he teaches litigation skills to attorneys around the world.

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July 22, 2015

CBF Legal Aid Academy Partners with Kirkland & Ellis for Expert Deposition & Trial Skills Training

This summer, 40 legal aid attorneys and members of the CBF Justice Entrepreneurs Project participated in a three-day expert deposition and trial skills training program sponsored by Kirkland & Ellis LLP through the CBF Legal Aid Academy.  This is the second year in a row that Kirkland has partnered with the CBF Legal Aid Academy to provide free, high-quality training to attorneys in the legal aid community.

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May 20, 2015

Meet Catherine Sanders Reach, CBA Director of Law Practice Management & Technology

Catherine Sanders Reach wants attorneys to know that no matter how proficient they are with today’s technology, there is always more to learn. Technology makes our work easier, more efficient, more productive and, often, more fun.

Director of Law Practice Management & Technology for the Chicago Bar Association, Catherine’s words of wisdom come from experience. Her first job out of the University of Alabama with her master’s of library and information studies in hand, was as a law firm librarian. The late €˜90’s were a heady time for her profession as information moved from print to digital…

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February 9, 2015

Meet Brenda Chauncey, Director of Firmwide Attorney Training Administration at Kirkland & Ellis

Brenda Chauncey Kirkland & Ellis’ Director of Firmwide Attorney Training Administration has a long, unwieldy title. This is perfectly appropriate however, because her very big job would be, in lesser hands, just as unwieldy.

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August 13, 2014

Learning a Better Way to Teach

Seventeen legal aid attorneys recently participated in an interactive two-day program on designing and delivering effective trainings offered by the CBF Legal Aid Academy. David Cruickshank from Edge International, an expert in legal skills education, presented the program…

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May 27, 2014

Meet Faith Pincus, Founder & CEO of Pincus Professional Education

Once we leave law school, it doesn’t take long for most attorneys to realize just how much we don’t know. And, for most of us, that feeling never really goes away because, no matter how long you’ve worked as an attorney there is still a lot you don’t know.

Faith Pincus, founder and CEO of Pincus Professional Education, has made it her job to help all attorneys, including those working at legal service programs, learn essential practical skills. She built her brainchild, Pincus Professional Education, into a leading CLE company that provides high quality legal education including skills and strategy training for attorneys at all levels.

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