LAF is beyond grateful for the partnership it has forged with Sidley Austin LLP over the years. Sidley has long championed the fight for equal justice, and not just from the sidelines. LAF recently had the great fortune to work alongside Sidley attorneys on a landmark civil legal justice case. The team ensured that the rights of residents in the former Cabrini Green housing project were upheld by repeatedly taking the Chicago Housing Authority to court and holding them accountable to fulfill their legal obligations to build affordable housing units in the redevelopment of the old Chicago housing project.
Sidley was recently honored for their commitment to pro bono service when the 7th Circuit Bar Association presented the firm with its Pro Bono and Public Service Award for Outstanding Work in the District Courts of Illinois. This not the first time Sidley Austin has been recognized for its work with LAF and its clients. In May 2012, the Judges of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois and the Chicago Chapter of the Federal Bar Association presented Sidley Austin with its Award for Excellence In Pro Bono Service. This award recognized Sidley Austin’s representation of the Cabrini-Green Local Advisory Council in an earlier federal case challenging CHA’s illegal relocation of residents without providing proper notice, adequate alternative housing, and sufficient social services to aid in the relocation. Pictured here are members of LAF’s staff who attended the award ceremony to cheer on their teammates from the recent Cabrini litigation.
In addition to the outstanding pro bono partnership LAF has built with Sidley, members of the Sidley community have consistently stepped up over the years to be vocal ambassadors for our work and our clients. LAF has awarded its Champion for Justice award in recent years to both longtime supporter and former Managing Partner Charles W. Douglas, and Pro Bono Coordinator Richard O’Malley, Jr. Sidley partner Maja Eaton has been a die-hard member of the LAF Board of Directors, serving as Board president from June of 2013 to June of 2015. David Majors, a Senior Manager in Sidley’s Strategic Planning and Analysis practice was a founding member of the LAF Young Professionals Board and served as the 2014/15 YPB Co-Chair.
Most recently, Sidley once again led the charge in supporting LAF and legal aid in our community by increasing its annual financial contribution by 50% to $150,000 in 2016, to commemorate LAF’s 50th Anniversary and the firm’s 150th Anniversary. But even then, just increasing its own support was only part of their commitment to us – Managing Partner Larry Barden also sent a letter to the other Chicago law firms asking them to increase their support by 50% as well.
LAF, and the people we help, are extremely fortunate to have such steady and committed partners like the people at Sidley Austin LLP. We cannot thank them enough for their continued partnership and support.