Staff Successes!

LAF attorneys Kenya Burnett and Dennericka Brooks have recently been honored by two highly prestigious awards.

On September 18th, Kenya, who works in our Public Benefits Practice Group, received one of five 2013 Chicago Bar Foundation Sun-Times Public Interest Law Fellowships.  These fellowships began in 2007, and help outstanding recent law school graduates who work in public interest law  to pay back their student loans.  You can read the Chicago Bar Foundation’s profile of Kenya here, where they note “her extraordinary efforts and accomplishments advocating for low-income individuals and families” and her “strong and deeply personal” commitment to her work.

photo by Bill Richert.

Dennericka, an attorney in our Housing Practice Group, will receive the St. Robert Bellarmine Award from the Loyola University School of Law on October 30th.  This award was established in 1985 by the Law Alumni Association to honor alumni who have been in practice for 15 years or less and who have distinguished themselves by their contributions to the profession and to the School of Law.  This honor puts Dennericka into the distinguished company of Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, Dan. K. Webb, former U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois and current partner and chairman at Winston & Strawn, Gery Chico, former Chicago mayoral candidate and current chair of the Illinois State board of Education, and Mary Meg McCarthy, the executive director of Heartland Alliance’s National Immigrant Justice.

We’re enormously proud of these two amazing attorneys.  Join us in celebrating the achievements of Kenya Burnett and Dennericka Brooks, and in thanking them for everything they do for LAF, for the community, for their clients, and for the City of Chicago!

Bilingual Pro Bono Opportunity

LAF is looking for Spanish-speaking volunteers in our Medical Debt Relief Project.

LAF’s Medical Debt Relief Project helps eligible clients prepare the necessary paperwork to request  a waiver of medical debts from hospitals. Financial assistance and charity care are a great way for people of low income to lower their debts without filing bankruptcy.

Volunteers need not be attorneys, but must be detail-oriented and able to communicate effectively with clients.  We are asking for a minimum commitment to the project of three months, 10 hours per week. The schedule is flexible.

The position includes face-to-face and phone interviews with clients and assisting clients with filling out the proper forms. The volunteer will also follow-up with clients to obtain the necessary supporting documentation, and file applications and follow up with the hospitals to ensure that the applications are processed in a timely fashion.

If you are interested and wish you learn more about this opportunity, please email your resume to Federico Guzman at  fguzman@lafchicago.org or 312.347.8364.

Section 8 and Foreclosures

This week, WBEZ’s Natalie Moore, in collaboration with Angela Caputo from the Chicago Reporter, reported about the number of housing choice voucher-holders living in foreclosed properties.  The Chicago Housing Authority is paying their landlords a monthly rental subsidy, but many of those landlords are neglecting their properties and their tenants’ needs.  Attorneys from LAF’s Housing Practice Group are working on this important issue, and Moore interviewed LAF’s Lizzie Rosenthal for the story.

Lizzie was great, and you can hear the entire report on the Chicago Public Media website here.  Thanks for getting the word out, Lizzie!

If you are a tenant in a foreclosed property in need of legal assistance, call LAF at 312 341-1070 to request an appointment.