The Charlotte Triage pro bono partnership — a collaboration led by McGuireWoods, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Duke Energy, and Moore & Van Allen to expand pro bono services for low-income Charlotte residents — marked its fourth anniversary Sept. 28, 2022, with CLE training sessions attended by 272 legal and other professionals. Attendees learned about Charlotte Triage and received training to assist legal aid clients.
Charlotte Triage supports Legal Aid of North Carolina-Charlotte and the Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy by enabling the legal aid organizations to outsource work to private practice lawyers and in-house counsel for matters related to human trafficking, criminal record expunctions, healthcare enrollment, housing eviction defense and special immigrant juvenile cases.
“This extraordinary collaboration between our pro bono partners and legal aid organizations has made a difference in the lives of individuals and families throughout our region, and we are excited about the work ahead,” said counsel Angie Zimmern, McGuireWoods’ pro bono director.
“Charlotte Triage has succeeded by identifying practice areas with the highest pro bono needs putting our collective leadership and manpower to work in those areas,” added Todd Stillerman, Wells Fargo’s assistant general counsel. Stillerman, Zimmern and Joanna Wade, Bank of America’s associate general counsel, serve as co-chairs of the Charlotte Triage Task Force.
Kodwo Ghartey-Tagoe — Duke Energy’s executive vice president, chief legal officer and corporate secretary — delivered welcoming remarks at the anniversary event and exhorted volunteers to build on Charlotte Triage’s success.
“We are proud of the efforts we have made in the Charlotte community, but we know there is much more to be done,” Ghartey-Tagoe said. “The justice system is far more powerful when lawyers are willing to provide pro bono service to those who don’t have access to counsel for their legal needs. With Charlotte Triage, we will continue to help pro bono clients in matters that impact their lives.”
Other speakers included Charlotte Triage leaders Kieth Cockrell, president of Bank America Charlotte; Wells Fargo deputy general counsel Mark Metz; Ashley Campbell, CEO of Legal Aid of North Carolina; and Toussaint Romain, CEO of the Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy.
Since its inception in 2018, Charlotte Triage has been recognized for exemplary pro bono service. The Pro Bono Institute honored Charlotte Triage with the 2020 Corporate Pro Bono Partner Award, which recognizes innovative pro bono partnerships between law firms, in-house legal departments and public interest organizations. In addition, the North Carolina State Bar honored Charlotte Triage with its Outstanding Pro Bono Collaborative Service award in 2020.