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On June 10, 2009, Venable held the annual Pro Bono Recognition Reception and presentated the Benjamin R. Civiletti Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year Awards to D.S. Gray, David Lasso, Doreen Martin, Seth Rosenthal and Jay Williams.

The "Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year" awards were established to recognize and honor the spirit of public service as demonstrated by Benjamin R. Civiletti throughout his career. The individuals chosen to receive this award have demonstrated a true commitment to public service through their pro bono efforts. The June 10th event was hosted by Venable's Pro Bono Committee.

Venable has a longstanding commitment to pro bono representation and public service. Since the firm’s founding over 100 years ago, Venable attorneys have been leaders in providing legal services to the community's disadvantaged. Working with national, state and local bar organizations, as well as with nonprofit providers of legal services, Venable has been in the forefront of efforts to serve those in need of legal representation.

Each year the firm handles hundreds of pro bono matters covering a broad range of issues, such as child welfare, civil rights and civil liberties, court-appointed cases, education outreach, the environment and historic preservation. In the past several years alone, the firm has been recognized as Pro Bono Law Firm of the Year by both the District of Columbia Bar Association and the Fairfax Bar Association.