|Ohio State Bar Association member and Supreme Court of Ohio Justice Evelyn Lundberg Stratton is the 2012 Ohio honorary chair for the National Pro Bono Celebration on Oct. 21-27, 2012.
The Pro Bono Celebration, in its fourth year, highlights the role that pro bono lawyers play in providing vital civil legal services to people who cannot afford a lawyer and underscores the difference that pro bono lawyers make to their communities, the courts and the clients that are helped.
Justice Stratton was the first woman elected to the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas and was later appointed to the Supreme Court, where she is in her third elected term. She has announced her retirement from the Court at the end of the year to more fully pursue her advocacy work in criminal justice.
Justice Stratton's strong interest in mental health courts with an emphasis on treatment for those whose illness may have led to criminal behavior has expanded to include work on the development of veterans treatment courts to assist veterans who may have become involved with criminal courts as the result of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or Traumatic Brain Injury.
Working in collaboration with the Ohio Legal Assistance Foundation, OSBA, representatives of active branches of the military service and others, Justice Stratton led the creation of the Ohio Military/Veterans Legal Assistance Project, which will recruit pro bono attorneys to accept cases representing veterans and active or reserve military personnel who cannot afford to hire an attorney. The project is in the development phase and is not yet ready to accept cases statewide.
For more information about the National Pro Bono Celebration and for a complete listing of Celebration events taking place throughout Ohio, visit www.celebrateprobono.org.