February 2019 – Dawn Crawford

In the past year, Dawn Crawford, Senior Legal Counsel at Magellan Health Services, has helped 18 clients at three expungement clinics.  In September 2017, MVLS partnered with the Association of Corporate Counsel – Baltimore Chapter for a Day of Service. 

Several in-house counsel volunteered their day to assist MVLS clients with expunging their criminal record at  Bon Secours Community Works in Baltimore.  Dawn was one of those volunteers who has continued to help clients in need of assistance.  Since the original Day of Service, Dawn has returned two more times to the MVLS Bon Secours expungement clinics to help residents in West Baltimore reduce employment barriers. 

She has tackled complex expungement cases, and volunteered to help a client who had arrived after the clinic has closed.  We invite you to read more about Dawn and her responses about the great work she does for MVLS.

Why do you choose to volunteer with MVLS?  

Through the Association of Corporate Counsel, I had volunteered to participate in an expungement legal training class and clinic sponsored by MVLS.  After attending the MVLS training, I met with 15 clients some who had waited more than 8 hours to speak with an attorney.  I left feeling inspired to do more and I began signing up for on line training courses and participating in other clinics sponsored by MVLS. 

Do you have any stand out stories?

None in particular but every successful outcome achieved for a client is a stand out for me. 

What is your favorite part about volunteering with MVLS?

I am personally and professionally enriched by helping the clients of MVLS. In addition, the staff and lawyers at MVLS provide support, training and all the tools needed to make the volunteer experience productive and rewarding.

Why should other attorneys do pro bono?

Pro bono work is our professional duty as lawyers and officers of the Court. Additionally, helping our most vulnerable populations is immensely satisfying and will make you happier as a lawyer. Finally, pro bono work allows you to practice in many areas of the law and this can help you become better rounded as a lawyer in general.

As an in-house counsel, how have you made pro bono work for you?

I work for a company that supports and encourages local community service including paid time off for its employees to perform volunteer work. This has allowed me the flexibility to staff legal clinics and meet with MVLS clients during business hours.