Michael Pinard, JD,(pictured right) professor and director of the Clinical Law Program at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law has been recognized by the White House as a Champion of Change, an honor given to individuals for their outstanding public service.
Pinard will participate Oct. 13 at the White House with Attorney General Eric Holder and 15 other honorees in a national, online conversation among law students and faculty, lawyers and social service professionals on what can be done to close the justice gap.
The law school will host a live stream of the video and students from across the country will have their questions addressed by Holder and the Champion of Change recipients.
The live webstream will be Oct. 13 at 2pm in the Ceremonial Moot Court Room. You can also watch the live stream from your personal computer at www.whitehouse.gov/live.
With 25 faculty and 250 students, the Clinical Law Program, ranked sixth nationally, provides more than 110,000 hours of free legal services each year, making it one of the country's largest public interest law firms. It was the first law school program to receive the John Minor Wisdom Award, the American Bar Association's (ABA) leading public service honor.
Pinard is a well-known authority on the collateral consequences of criminal convictions, including state statutes and policies that deny voting privileges, public housing and professional licenses to ex-offenders. He teaches the Re-Entry of Ex-Offenders Clinic, in which UM Carey Law students represent ex-offenders and advocate for changes in Maryland law and policy on their behalf.
He also has written numerous scholarly articles on the topic and organized conferences that bring together ex-offenders, judges, prosecutors, police officers, and social service providers to focus on challenges that prisoners face trying to re-enter society.
Pinard is editor-in-chief of the Clinical Law Review, serves on the Clinical Skills Committee of the ABA's Section on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, and is the past president of the Clinical Legal Education Association. He was honored in 2006 by the American Association of Law Schools with the Shanara Gilbert Award, given annually to an outstanding emerging clinician.
Pinard joins a very distinguished group of other Champions of Change in the legal field. They include:
* Laura Abel, Acting Co-Director, Brennan Center Justice Program, New York.
* Martha Bergmark, President/CEO, Mississippi Center for Justice, Jackson, Miss.
* Todd Belcore, Staff Attorney and Equal Justice Works Fellow, Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, Chicago.
* Deborah Ellis, Assistant Dean for Public Service, New York University School of Law, New York.
* Paula Sela Gomez, Executive Director, Brownsville Community Health Center
* David Gray Hall, Executive Director, Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, Brownsville, Texas (Shared Champion Award for their Medical/Legal Partnership)
* Nan Heald, Executive Director, Pine Tree Legal Assistance, Portland, Maine
* Lillian Johnson, Executive Director, Community Legal Service, Phoenix, AZ
* Addison Parker, Former Litigation Director, Appalachian Research and Defense Fund of Kentucky, Prestonsburg, Ky.
* Deborah Rhode, E.W. McFarland Professor of Law, Stanford Law School, Stanford.
* Tom Saenz, President and CEO, Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, Los Angeles.
* Brad Smith, Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Microsoft Corporation, Seattle.
* David Stern, Executive Director, Equal Justice Works, Washington, D.C.
* Jo-Ann Wallace, President/CEO, National Legal Aid and Defender Association, Washington, D.C.
* Ron Whitener, Director, Tribal Court Public Defense Clinic, University of Washington Law School, Seattle.