A big thank-you to Patty Johnson, at Connections Marketing & Communications, for passing on the following news:

Under the leadership of Justice Sandra O’Connor, the Avon Program for Women and Justice at the O’Connor House launched the Volunteer Lawyers Network in May 2012 to assist victims of domestic violence with legal issues like protective orders, child custody and bankruptcy, which often keep them trapped in abusive situations.

Justice Sandra Day O’Connor at the kickoff reception of the Volunteer Lawyers Network program through the Avon Program for Women and Justice and the O’Connor House. (L to R: Kim Sterling, Justice O’Connor, Allen Kimbrough and Lucia Howard)

The new program is a collaboration of organizations and volunteers, including Community Legal Services, volunteer lawyers, the state and county Bar Associations, the Halle Center for Family Justice and Lewis and Roca, which signed on as the first law firm to sponsor the project.

Justice O’Connor extended her personal “thank you” at the kick-off event to the volunteers, who will be paired with more experienced lawyers and law students to form “teams” to assist victims unable to get legal representation.

Justice O’Connor noted that this project was another example of what is possible through collaboration. “I believe there is a great deal of talent and compassion in Arizona, and if we work together we can find creative solutions to many of the problems facing our community.”