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Louisiana Supreme Court Hosts 2019 LSBA Pro Bono & Children's Law Awards


The Louisiana Supreme Court hosted the Louisiana State Bar Association’s 34th Annual Pro Bono Publico & Children’s Law Awards Ceremony on Tuesday, May 21, 2019. The LSBA Pro Bono Awards celebrate the best in the legal profession by acknowledging those attorneys and other public interest professionals who have gone beyond their professional duties to ensure justice and access to our legal system for those without the ability to hire an attorney. Visit our Facebook page to see more photos from the ceremony, and view award winner bios on our Pro Bono Resources page.



LSBA President Barry Grodsky and members of the Louisiana Supreme Court presented the awards to the 2019 Pro Bono Publico and Children’s Law Award recipients as LSBA President-Elect Bob Kutcher announced the award winners. Justice John L. Weimer and Louisiana Bar Foundation President Amanda Barnett gave opening remarks. Also helping to distribute awards were Justice Marcus R. Clark, Justice Jefferson D. Hughes III, and Justice Scott J. Crichton. The ceremony was held in the Louisiana Supreme Court Building in New Orleans, and was followed by a reception.

The following individuals were honored with the listed awards:

Children’s Law Award
Jack Harrison – Baton Rouge

Law Student Award
Victoria T. Heyer – Louisiana State University Paul M. Hebert Law Center
Patrick M. Jackson – Loyola University College of Law
Samantha Johnson – Southern University Law Center
Andrew Taylor – Tulane University Law School

Friend of Pro Bono
H. Bruce Shreves – New Orleans
Entergy Services, LLC – Legal Department – New Orleans

Pro Bono Publico
Courtney Hollier Guillory – Lafayette
Molly C. McDiarmid – Baton Rouge
Patti Oppenheim – Mandeville
Christopher B. Ortte – Lafayette
Gregory J. Reda – Baton Rouge
Phillip M. Smith – Lafayette
Michelle Demarest Sunseri – Covington
Davidson, Meaux, Sonnier, McElligott, Fontenot, Gideon & Edwards, LLP – Lafayette
Stone Pigman Walther Wittmann L.L.C. – New Orleans

LA.FreeLegalAnswers Award
Cornelia S. Ullmann – Metairie

Career Public Interest Award
Michael A. Mitchell – Baton Rouge

David A. Hamilton Lifetime Achievement Award
Leonard K. Knapp, Jr. – Lake Charles


The Pro Bono Century Awards were also handed out, recognizing those extraordinary attorneys who have demonstrated exemplary commitment to the ideals of their profession by providing over 100 hours of volunteer pro bono services during the past calendar year through an established pro bono organization. These individuals have well–exceed the ABA’s aspirational goal of providing 50 hours of pro bono service each year.

2019 Century Club Award
Mary Beth Akin – Gretna
Dana Dallas Atchison – New Orleans
Kyle Matthew Brennan – New Orleans
W. Scott Brown – New Orleans
Pamela W. Carter – River Ridge
Catharine Ohlsson Gracia – New Orleans
Marquest J. Meeks – New Orleans
Mark C. Surprenant – New Orleans
Kathryn Ann Washington – New Orleans


View photos from the event on our Facebook page.

Louisiana State Bar Association
601 St. Charles Avenue
New Orleans, LA 70130
(800) 421-LSBA(5722) / (504) 566-1600