Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Attorney Honored for Pro Bono Service

Nashville, TN -- The Board of Directors of the Tennessee Justice Center has honored law firm Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP as Pro Bono Firm of the Year and attorney Michael Abelow, Sherrard & Roe, PLC as Pro Bono Attorney of the Year.
Bradley Arant Boult Cummings was honored by the Tennessee Justice Center (TJC) for the firm’s efforts in representing needy families in their TennCare appeals. In 2008, fifteen (15) attorneys at Bradley Arant Boult Cummings were involved in contributing a total of approximately 500 hours of pro bono legal services to clients of the Tennessee Justice Center. As a result of the law firm’s pro bono representation of individuals during their TennCare appeals hearings, many sick and disabled people were able to receive needed health care.

Michael Abelow, Sherrard & Roe, was honored for his work on the Crabtree v. Goetz case, a lawsuit challenging a state decision to severely limit home health care for adult TennCare patients. In fall 2008, the state set in motion reductions in private duty nursing and home health care for approximately 900 extremely fragile adults across the state. Abelow worked with the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands, Philadelphia attorney Stephen F. Gold, and counsel from the National Health Law Program, to file the Crabtree v. Goetz suit that asserts new state coverage limits violate the Americans with Disabilities Act. A preliminary injunction was obtained on December 20, 2008. As a result, dozens of medically fragile Tennesseans have kept their nursing care. The TennCare rules that authorize reductions in home health and private duty nursing are currently under review by the General Assembly.
“We are very grateful to Bradley Arant Boult Cummings and to attorney Michael Abelow for their efforts on behalf of TennCare families in need of vital health care services,” said Michele Johnson, managing attorney of the Tennessee Justice Center. “Their generosity in sharing their time and legal expertise has a tremendous impact on the lives of many people.”
The Tennessee Justice Center presented the Pro Bono awards during a reception on the evening of May 7. The award winners, who wore rose boutonnieres, were presented with a mounted print of “He Ain’t Heavy,” an original piece of art by Erin Brady Worsham, a mother, artist, activist, and TJC client with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Ms. Worsham’s work has been exhibited internationally.
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Bradley Arant Boult Cummings Named Pro Bono Firm of the Year;
Michael Abelow, Sherrard & Roe, Named Pro Bono Attorney of the Year
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David Taylor, partner at Bradley Arant Boult Cummings and pro bono partner for the firm, said, “We believe that all attorneys have an ethical obligation to provide representation to people who need it, but cannot afford legal services.” He noted that, in 2008, attorneys at Bradley Arant Boult Cummings provided a total of 4,252 hours of pro bono representation to clients referred by the Tennessee Justice Center, the Nashville Bar Association,
and other organizations. More than 70 attorneys at the firm are involved in the firm’s pro bono program.
“I am pleased that the Court has halted the arbitrary cuts in home health care while the alternatives to institutionalization are implemented,” said Abelow. Abelow is a Member of Sherrard & Roe. He graduated Summa Cum Laude in 2000 from Washington & Lee University School of Law, and litigates complex commercial disputes.
During the May 7 reception, which was hosted at Stites & Harbison law firm, the Tennessee Justice Center also honored six Tennessee mothers and grandmothers as Mothers of the Year and one mother from Macon County as Community Mother of the Year.
About Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP
Tracing its roots to 1871, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP has more than 360 attorneys in seven offices, and is one of the largest in the South. The firm maintains offices in Birmingham, Huntsville, and Montgomery, Alabama; Jackson,
Mississippi; Charlotte, North Carolina; Nashville, Tennessee; and Washington, D.C.
The firm’s lawyers serve clients locally, regionally, nationally and internationally, and provide services across a wide range of industries, including accounting, automotive, banking and finance, biotechnology, construction, education, emerging business, energy, entertainment, equipment leasing, forest products, health care, hospitality, insurance, manufacturing, materials and aggregate production, media and communications, mining, municipal and public finance, oil and gas, pharmaceuticals and medical devices, public utilities, real estate, retail, steel, technology, telecommunications, textiles,
transportation, and venture capital.

About Michael Abelow and Sherrard & Roe
Michael Abelow is a member of the litigation practice group at Sherrard and Roe. He graduated Summa Cum Laude in 2000 from Washington & Lee University School of Law, where he was first in his class and was a member of the Law Review. After graduation, he served as a law clerk to the Honorable E.A. Van Graafeiland of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Prior to coming to Nashville, he litigated cases for the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
Sherrard & Roe, PLC was formed in 1981 by Thomas J. Sherrard and John H. Roe. The firm represents clients in business activities throughout the United States and also represents European clients regarding financial and investment matters in the United States. The firm is experienced in transactional work and dispute resolution in many areas of law including corporate representation, banking, mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings, commercial litigation, employment, real estate, estate planning, health care and tax law. Clients include banks and financial institutions, national and multi-national enterprises as well as small entrepreneurial businesses and individuals.

About Tennessee Justice Center
The Tennessee Justice Center (TJC) is a non-profit public interest law firm. Its purpose is to respond to threats to the health and well-being of Tennessee’s most vulnerable citizens by being their advocate and working through the law. TJC was established in 1996 and is located at 301 Charlotte Avenue, Nashville, TN 37201.

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