Pro Bono Awards Announcement

Thursday, October 9, 2014

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Massachusetts is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2014 Pro Bono Publico awards.

District of Massachusetts Award: Donald R. Lassman, Law Offices of Donald R. Lassman, Needham is to be honored for his development of and participation in programs throughout the District of Massachusetts that support military veterans needing access to legal services and financial education. In addition to representing indigent parties in bankruptcy matters, his service included training attorney volunteers on such topics as mortgages, foreclosures, debt management and bankruptcy, who then help service members and their families facing financial difficulties. Attorney Lassman's service has helped improve the quality of life for Massachusetts' veterans and service members returning from active duty to Massachusetts.

Eastern Division Award: Susan Grossberg, Grossberg Law Offices, Boston is to be honored for her volunteer mentoring for both new and experienced bankruptcy practitioners on bankruptcy law matters and professional responsibility. Boston area legal service agencies, bar leaders and practitioners praise her dedication, and her volunteerism and the enthusiasm that she brings to her efforts.

Central Division Award: Paul Carey, Mirick O'Connell, Worcester is to be honored for his time and commitment in resolving the myriad of issues that arose following the abrupt closing of a Worcester area bankruptcy attorney's office. Attorney Carey worked tirelessly to help the scores of debtors whose lives were affected by this event. He helped these individuals transition to new attorneys, and worked with local bar leaders and the courts to minimize this unforeseen and unfortunate disruption in the lives of these debtors.

South Coast/Cape & Islands Division Award: David G. Prentiss, New Bedford is to be honored for his pro bono representation of low income and indigent people needing debt relief in the South Coast/ Cape & Islands area of the District over the last ten years. In addition to representing debtors, he has given his time to mentoring new attorneys and serving on non-profit boards of agencies dedicated to helping the disadvantaged.

Western Division Award: Justin H. Dion, Bacon Wilson, PC is to be honored for his leadership in Western Massachusetts and his creativity in the cause of access to justice. As Chair of the Legal Studies department at Bay Path University in Longmeadow, Attorney Dion has accepted cases from local legal service agencies and incorporated the preparation of those cases into his paralegal studies curriculum. This resourcefulness results in indigent debtors being connected to legal services they might otherwise be unable to find.

The bankruptcy judges will present the awards on October 30, 2014 at a ceremony at the John W. McCormack Post Office and Court House in Boston attended by attorneys who have rendered pro bono services in the past year.