Attorney and pro bono volunteer Angela Glaser knows what it is like to be in her clients’ shoes. Glaser is motivated to provide pro bono legal services in addition to her other professional and personal responsibilities because she has relied on help from others at one point in her life.

“I was a teenage mother, lived in public housing and relied on daycare assistance to complete college and eventually law school.  Simply put, I can relate to most of my pro bono clients and we work together as a team.  Everyone falls on hard times, but it feels really great to help someone when they are in their darkest place,” Glaser said.

Many Ohio attorneys recognize this need for pro bono legal services, and are called to dedicate their time.

Social Security Administration attorney and pro bono volunteer Lindsey Posey said, “I come to pro bono service out of a personal sense of further obligation to others. I am motivated by the concept that, while it is a small amount of my time, it is a big impact on behalf of those receiving needed services. Many small efforts can result in a big change.”

This March, Ohio attorneys are asked to report their pro bono service and financial contributions to charitable legal organizations by completing the annual pro bono reporting survey, a joint project of the Supreme Court of Ohio and the Ohio Access to Justice Foundation. The survey is currently open to all Ohio attorneys and will take less than 10 minutes to complete.

Supreme Court of Ohio Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor encourages attorneys to complete the survey by March 9.

“While considering your place in the pro bono arena, please fill out the survey,” she said in a video to all Ohio attorneys. “It will take you less time than it takes to drink a cup of coffee.”

While the survey is voluntary, the information is valuable in that it helps identify areas of legal need and helps to determine how resources can be better allocated to help Ohioans access justice.

Montgomery County Juvenile Court attorney and Court Appointed Special Advocate manager Jane Novick understands how critical pro bono legal services are in increasing access to justice in Ohio.

“There is no quick fix to a lack of access to justice for many individuals. Rather than saying we will never solve the problem, if each of us does what we can, then we can make a major dent. There are so many ways to provide pro bono services depending on one’s available time,” said Novick. “We all benefit when we help increase the number of people that have access to justice.”

Questions about pro bono reporting? Contact Sophia Chang at 614.715.8568 or justiceinaction@ohiojusticefoundation.org