PBN Recognized as Pro Bono Leader by ABA

We are humbled to be recognized as a Pro Bono Leader by the ABA Center for Pro Bono. Last year, our volunteer attorneys were able to help 126 individuals needing pro bono legal advice via the ABA’s Free Legal Answers online portal. 


PBN Volunteers Named CDEL Volunteers of the Year 

Congratulations to PBN volunteer attorneys Karen Boyd, Catherine Taylor Cappel, Ken Shiner, and Libby Wood, who were recognized as Volunteers of the Year by the Center for Disability and Elder Law. 


PBN Recognizes Volunteer with Hummingbird Award

Every year, we give our Hummingbird Award to a volunteer who embodies the tale’s message—doing as much as you can to help. This year’s recipient is Patti Marino, who started with us shortly after retiring in 2012. Most recently, Patti successfully completed an epic years-long project to get SSI benefits for a disabled single mom. 


PBN Volunteer Laura Gastel Named Volunteer of the Year by ABA

Congratulations to PBN #volunteerattorney Laura Gastel. Laura was recently recognized by the ABA Center for Pro Bono for “providing extraordinary pro bono services through ABA Free Legal Answers” through her participation with PBN's Online Legal Counseling Project. 


PBN Launches New DACA Immigration Project

We are very excited about our new immigration project, working with undocumented young people who qualify for work permits under the federal immigration policy known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). The policy allows eligible individuals to stay in the country temporarily and apply for temporary work permits. Earlier this month, 17 attorneys completed our first project training.

CDEL Recognizes PBN with Distinguished Service Award

During its Light Up the Loop, CDEL recognized PBN and our volunteers by awarding us the Distinguished Service Award. Read more. 

Public Interest Law Initiative Recognizes PBN with Pro Bono Initiative Award

PBN was selected from among many nominations for their outstanding contributions to public interest law and pro bono in Illinois. Read more. 

Legal Aid Foundation Names PBN Volunteers "Attorneys of the Year"

Legal Aid Foundation, now Legal Aid Chicago, named four PBN volunteers, including director of programming, Sheila Pont, as "attorneys of the year." 

Lawyers' Committee for Better Housing Recognizes PBN as "2013 LCBH Friend of the Year"

LCBH recognized PBN for the advocacy provided to clients in tenant-landlord disputes, everything from lease negotiations to reasonable accommodation requests and demands for repair. Read more. 

PBN Recognized by Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago for Volunteerism

The first agency with whom we worked also graced PBN with its first volunteerism award -- the Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago. PBN remains grateful to CRFC for getting us off the ground. 


Happy Birthday, PBN!


Ten years ago, we got together around Donna Peel's kitchen table during "snowmageddon" to do something about the need for free legal services in the area. In this short clip, Donna recalls that first meeting.


Pro Bono Network’s 10th Anniversary

Wednesday Journal

Ten years ago, while “snowmageddon” raged in Chicago, Pro Bono Network formed, changing the model for the way free legal services are provided. Ten years later, we continue to create meaningful change in the lives of low-income residents.


Pro Bono Network Aids Access to Legal Services

Wednesday Journal

Each of us is struggling to adjust to the “new normal” brought about by the coronavirus (COVID-19). Sheltering-in-place, social-distancing, and caring for our families, coupled with unprecedented uncertainty, is changing the way we go about our lives. 

Addressing the Shortage of Pro Bono Attorneys

Chicago Tribune

According to the Legal Services Corporation Justice Gap report, low-income Americans received no or inadequate legal help for 86 percent of their non-criminal legal problems. Learn how PBN is addressing the shortage. 

Pro Bono Attorneys Needed to Address Growing Justice Gap

Austin Weekly News

In Cook County alone, approximately one half of the 1.4 million people who qualify for legal aid will need assistance in any given year. However, current legal aid programs and pro bono attorneys in Illinois cannot come close to meeting that need.

Making Pro Bono Work

DuPage County Bar Association 

The need for attorneys to provide pro bono legal services has never been greater. Despite the strong efforts of national, state, and local entities to provide free legal services to those of limited means, statistics show that we are in a legal aid deficit. 

PBN with Sheila Pont

Comcast Newsmakers

PBN's director of programming, Sheila Pont, is interviewed by WGN's Paul Lisnek. 

Q&A with Heena Musabji

American Bar Association 

In this interview with the ABA, PBN director of development Heena Musabji discusses the PBN model and how it works. 

PBN Volunteer Anne Geraghty Helms Named to Most Influential Lawyers List

Crain's Chicago Business

Congratulations to Anne Geraghty Helms, named by Crain's Chicago Business as one of the 60 most influential lawyers in Chicago. 

For Stay-at-Home Lawyers Keen on Pro Bono, a New Kirkland Counsel Has You Covered

Donna Peel always planned to return to the practice of law. But Peel never expected that during her career break she would start an organization that helps stay-at-home parents like her plug into pro bono agencies as a way to keep their legal skills sharp. Of course, that’s exactly what happened. 

This Woman Created the Uber of Legal Aid

Donna Peel is using sharing-economy principles and woman power to help fill a dire need for legal-aid lawyers. Read more. 

Technology Is Making it Easier for Lawyers to Do Pro Bono Work

ABA Journal

The legal industry already has been heavily affected by technology and the “Uber-ization” of the marketplace. It follows that pro bono work also would be affected. 

Attorneys at Home: The Forgotten Resource for Legal Aid Delivery

The Federal Bar

Attorneys who leave their legal careers for home and family obligations often feel set afloat on the proverbial iceberg—with the parting advice to keep their legal skills current and stay in touch if they are serious about reentry. While the advice is true, it is enormously difficult to put into action. 


Know Their Name: Pro Bono Network

CARPLS Everyday Justice Blog

CARPLS is proud of its partnerships with many Chicago-area and Illinois organizations, including this month’s feature on the Pro Bono Network. CARPLS’ Everyday Justice Blog is a showcase for all of us who are working towards the mission of access to justice.


Pro Bono Attorneys Needed to Address Justice Gap

Riverside/Brookfield Landmark

According to the report, “The Justice Gap,” low-income Americans receive no or inadequate legal help for 86 percent for their non-criminal legal problems. These individuals include senior citizens, veterans, and those with disabilities. They may be experiencing housing problems or domestic violence, or they may be trying to obtain veterans’ benefits, disability benefits, or child support. Currently, there are not enough volunteer attorneys in Illinois to help them.