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The Common Scold



The Common Scold is named after a cause of action that originated in Pilgrim days, when meddlesome, argumentative, opinionated women who displeased the Puritan elders were punished by a brisk dunk in the local pond. Believe it or not, the tort lasted until 1972, when State v. Palendrano, 120 N.J. Super. 336, 293 A.2d 747 (N.J.Super.L., Jul 13, 1972) pretty much put it to rest. But the thought of those feisty women, not afraid of a little cold water, has always cheered me up and inspired me. I first used the moniker as the name of my humor column at the University of San Francisco School of Law many moons ago, and revive it now for this blawg!


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PROBONO.NET CELEBRATION

Celebrate Congrats to ProBono.Net, which celebrated its 10th anniversary on Sept. 15, with lovely dinner at New York City's W Hotel. The charismatic Mark O'Brien, co-founder and exec director, launched the dinner (great salmon, btw) before turning the mic over to Sullivan & Cromwell's of counsel, Michael Cooper; Phyllis Holmen, exec dir of Georgia Legal Services Program; NY deputy chief administrative judge Fern Fisher; Atlantic Philanthropies' Gara LaMarche (introduced by PBN's other co-founder, Michael Hertz, who flew in from London for the fete); and Allison McDermott, the group's deputy director.

Our CEO, BIll Pollak, is on the group's board of directors of PBN, whose goal, according to Hertz, is "increasing access to justice one app at a time." The organization has worked to create and promote technology tools -- such as its namesake probono.net network -- that help law firms and other organizations swiftly and efficiently provide individuals and resources to help give legal services to the under-represented.

Among its activities are LawHelp.org; LawHelp Interactive; Immigration Advocates Network; and Pro Bono Manager.

Miriam Buhl, of Weil Gotshal, who has been very active with the organization, was the recipient of LTN's 2008 Award for "Most innovative use of Technology for a Pro Bono Project." 

September 16, 2009 in Good Works | Permalink

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