$5,000 Challenge Match Announced

100 gifts to MVLS between now and Nov. 28 will unlock $5,000 in matching funds.

With your support, Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS) pairs committed volunteer and staff attorneys with clients who would otherwise be left to navigate the legal system on their own.

If we can secure 100 gifts between now and #GivingTuesday, MVLS will unlock a $5,000 match from Schochor, Staton, Goldberg and Cardea, P.A to fund our core program.

By investing in legal services, you give people a fair chance at justice, and allow them to resolve the legal issues most central to their housing, families, and financial stability. And that means a stronger community.

So please, make a gift today.

Go to http://weblink.donorperfect.com/MVLS/GivingTuesday or click Donate to help unlock the challenge.

For more information, contact Katie Sutton at ksutton@mvlslaw.org or 443-451-4065.

The Daily Record Business Album Features 2023 Celebrate Pro Bono Event

The Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service honored several individuals who demonstrated an exceptional commitment to pro bono and to the Maryland legal community during the 2023 Celebrate Pro Bono Awards Oct. 17 at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum in Baltimore.

See the full coverage of our signature benefit event in The Daily Record’s Business Album here:

Learn more about this and other special events using the links below.

The Daily Record Business Album Highlights 2023 A Taste for Pro Bono Benefit Event

“Maryland Volunteer Lawyer’s Service brought together colleagues and friends April 27 to enjoy an evening of food, fun and fellowship at the Baltimore Museum of Industry for A Taste for Pro Bono, its annual fundraiser to raise funds and recruit attorneys and tax professionals to volunteer their legal help for free.”

See the full coverage of our signature benefit event in The Daily Record’s Business Album here:

Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service Aims to Raise $175,000 to Help Provide Free Legal Help

“A Taste for Pro Bono” Will Help Raise Funds, Recruit Volunteers and Enable Marylanders to Get Fair Legal Representation

BALTIMOREMaryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS), a statewide nonprofit offering full legal representation to low-income Marylanders, will host its annual fundraiser – A Taste for Pro Bono – today at the Baltimore Museum of Industry to raise much-needed funds and recruit attorneys and tax professionals to volunteer to provide free legal help. This year’s presenting sponsor is Saul Ewing LLP.

According to MVLS, studies about access to justice indicate that 3 in 4 low-income households experienced a civil legal problem in the past year, and nearly 40% experienced more than five issues. Most of these households struggle to afford necessities, let alone an attorney.

MVLS handles civil cases, including child custody, criminal record relief, divorce, estate planning and administration, foreclosure, income tax issues and consumer cases like debt collection. All services are income-based and MVLS encourages clients with legal questions to reach out for help before it’s too late. MVLS mobilizes a network of more than 1,000 volunteer attorneys and tax professionals who do pro bono work to respond to this need. MVLS offers a variety of training and webinars for its volunteers to learn more about pro bono and can match them with cases of Marylanders in need of assistance.

A Taste for Pro Bono is an opportunity for colleagues and friends to enjoy an evening of food, fun and fellowship,” said MVLS Executive Director Susan Francis. “But most importantly, this major fundraiser will empower our nonprofit to improve awareness about pro bono, recruit volunteers, answer clients’ calls for help and do the good work of ensuring justice isn’t dependent on how much money a person makes – but that low-income Marylanders also can get the legal representation they need and deserve. Our goal this year is to raise $175,000.”

This year’s event will feature exhibits at the Baltimore Museum of Industry, food and drinks from Zeffert & Gold, a DJ and more than 250 guests supporting pro bono legal services. The event is supported by more than 60 sponsors, including law firms, credit unions, healthcare organizations and generous individuals. Last year’s event raised $156,000 to support MVLS’ mission.

“We are so grateful for our generous sponsors, our fundraising committee and all of our guests who will attend to support this very worthwhile cause,” Francis added. “There are so many people across the state who are facing life-changing legal issues. We can’t respond alone and welcome the support of our partners and community.”

Persons interested in volunteering with MVLS can join its pro bono panel. Newer attorneys and tax professionals also may consider joining MVLS’ young professionals group known as the Community Action Network.

About Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service

Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS) is a nonprofit that mobilizes volunteers to provide free civil legal help. The organization serves thousands of people each year who otherwise would be unable to afford representation, focusing on six issues that have a significant impact on peoples’ everyday lives – family law, housing, finance, tax, criminal record relief and estate planning and administration. Through outreach and education, MVLS brings legal services to people who need it most. Through advocacy, MVLS fights for racial and economic justice. To learn more, visit mvlslaw.org.

Media Contact: Sandy Arnette, 410-274-5975, sandy@arnettemedia.com 

Ten Volunteers, Two Community Partners Will Receive Awards from MVLS During National Celebrate Pro Bono Week 

Baltimore – October 14, 2022 – Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS) is pleased to announce its 2022 Celebrate Pro Bono Award Winners. Volunteers and community partners who have helped the organization fulfill its mission to remove barriers to justice through free legal help, community engagement, and advocacy for more equitable laws will receive their awards at the October 25th Celebrate Pro Bono event, to be held at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum. Additionally, MVLS named nine volunteers who accepted 10 or more pro bono cases with the nonprofit during the past year.

The award winners are as follows:  

  • Volunteer of the Year, Michael J. McKeown
  • Law Firm of the Year, Law Office of Jo Ann Camm & Associates
  • Young Volunteer of the Year, Tina J. Azarvand, Esq.
  • Community Partner Award, Melvin Jadulang, Greater Greenmount Community Association
  • Community Partner Award, Lauren Kelly-Washington, Greenmount West Community Association & Jubilee Baltimore
  • Mentor of the Year, Robert D. Anbinder, Esq.
  • Mentor of the Year, Christopher R. Rahl, Esq.
  • COVID-19 Response Award, David Z. Lomke, Esq. & The Law Office of David Z. Lomke, LLC
  • New Volunteer of the Year, Christina Moore, Esq.
  • Special Recognition Award, Elizabeth Hayley-Marie Johnson, Esq.
  • 10 Years of Service, Jose Z. Canto, Esq.
  • 20 Years of Service, E. Hutchinson Robbins Jr., Esq.

Volunteers recognized for taking 10 or more pro bono cases include:

  • Constance M. Hare, Esq.
  • David Z. Lomke, Esq. & The Law Office of David Z. Lomke, LLC
  • Elva E. Tillman, Esq.
  • Jennifer A. Jones, Esq.
  • Jo Ann Camm, Esq.
  • Joseph E. Stolz, Jr.
  • Samuel C.P. Baldwin, Jr., Esq.
  • Thomas E. Mulinazzi, Esq. & The Mulinazzi Law Office
  • Tresa Fitch Drakeford, RN, Esq.

Collectively, the 2022 award winners have taken on 139 pro bono cases, dedicating well over 500 hours to clients in need of free legal help. The community partner awardees notably hosted seven presentations and events with MVLS and distributed 600 bags stuffed with resources and informational materials to their neighbors.  

Tickets to MVLS’ Celebrate Pro Bono event are $50 and on sale now at www.mvlslaw.org/mvls-events/celebrate-pro-bono. Please visit our event page to learn more about the event and about the organizations and individuals whose sponsorship makes the event possible.  

About the National Celebration of Pro Bono, from The American Bar Association: Pro bono work is a professional responsibility and an individual ethical commitment of each lawyer. The ABA Committee launched the National Celebration of Pro Bono in 2009 because of the increasing need for pro bono services during harsh economic times and the unprecedented response of attorneys to meet this demand. Every October since 2009, legal organizations across America participate in the National Celebration of Pro Bono to draw attention to the need for pro bono participation, and to thank those who give their time year round. 

About Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service: Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS) removes barriers to justice through free civil legal help, community engagement, and advocacy for equitable laws. The organization matches clients with volunteer lawyers, tax professionals and staff attorneys who represent them in a wide range of consumer finance, family and housing situations, including foreclosure, bankruptcy, divorce/custody, deed changes, as well as income tax disputes, estate planning, and criminal record relief. MVLS advocates for racial equity in Maryland’s legal system and works in concert with community partners to move toward a fair legal system that is free of injustice and equitably serves underrepresented Marylanders. For more information about MVLS, please visit www.mvlslaw.org. 

Celebrate Pro Bono 2020


Next week, October 25-31, 2020 we will be kicking off our Celebrate Pro Bono 2020 celebration. The week-long, virtual celebration will feature recognition of our award winners, volunteers, community partners, and supporters.

Are you or someone you know in need of assistance passing your home to the next generation? Help is available! On October 27 at 3 pm join us for our My Home, My Deed Home Owner Clinic. The virtual clinic will be hosted by telephone. Register today to get assistance.

Our Virtual Awards Ceremony will take place on October 28, 2020 at 5 pm. During the ceremony we will be announcing our award recipients with special remarks from Chief Judge Barbera. Register today and help us recognize those that have done amazing work in support of pro bono.

Attorneys, would you like to learn more about reverse mortgages? MVLS and Maryland Legal Aid will be hosting a virtual training on October 29th at 11 am Register today to learn what you need to know about reverse mortgages.

Have you taken a pledge for pro bono? Your pledge will help us provide individual representation or assistance at a clinic to help clients in need of free legal service. Take a Pledge for Pro Bono today!