Alumni

A Letter from the Alumni Chair

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Donald P. Salzman
Pro Bono Coordinator
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP

Dear LSIC Alum,

What do you think of when you look back on your time at Law Students in Court?

I remember the knot in my stomach and my dry throat as I was about to make an opening statement to a jury for first time in my life. And I remember my supervisor whispering in my ear “Salzman, you better not screw this up.” But I also remember the intense training and guidance that the LSIC supervisors gave me (and my LSIC student colleagues) and the high standards they set for investigating, brainstorming, preparing, and litigating cases so that I wouldn’t screw it up. And most of all, I remember the passion that the LSIC supervisors and my student colleagues awoke in me to fight for justice for poor people, a passion that informed the rest of my legal career.

Over twenty-five years later, I know that my time at LSIC was a transformational period that shaped my career. LSIC inspired and launched me toward a professional life devoted almost exclusively to helping those less fortunate enforce their rights in court. And I know that LSIC inspired many others to similarly devote their career to public service or to make significant room within their careers to help those in need. What a wonderful gift!

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Since Law Students in Court was formed in 1969, LSIC students have tried more than 10,000 civil and criminal cases and assisted more than 250,000 low- income individuals. LSIC is now more than 3,000 strong and I am thrilled whenever I hear about the amazing careers our students have gone on to enjoy. Our fellow alums have moved into positions of leadership in government, the nonprofit and private sectors- including some of the nation’s most prestigious law firms. LSIC alums are also on the bench (thirty alums are now judges) and several alumni hold elective office.

And just as importantly, Law Students in Court continues to ensure justice for Washington’s low-income community. Persistent poverty and the strain created by the City’s current economic conditions mean that thousands of poor DC residents face eviction every year, and many others are accused of crimes. LSIC and their supervisors fill a critical piece of the legal services fabric that allows these individuals to fight for fairness in the DC Courts. This is why I am asking you to support the Law Student in Court Alumni
Association.

It was a great opportunity to gain lawyering skills while helping indigent clients, preventing them from losing their homes, you know the stakes are really high.  My biggest takeaway is that the client always comes first, no matter what else is going on in your life. When I got my client’s water services restored after nine months, he was so happy. That was the best part of the experience. -Eric Rosenberg 2014

Your contribution to the LSIC Alumni Association will ensure that we can continue to provide these vital services … keeping clients in their homes, fighting for their rights, or protecting their liberty. And as an extra incentive … each new alumni membership we receive will be matched dollar for dollar- doubling the impact of your gift. As alums, we know the impact LSIC’s clinical training program had on our legal careers and our skills as attorneys. We also know that this unique program of using third year law students to represent needy individuals provides a great bang for the charitable bucks that LSIC receives.

I ask you to help lead the way by supporting the future alumni of Law Students in Court, so that they can take our place representing needy families in our community. Please join me by supporting LSIC with your Alumni Association gift. Your contribution will make an enormous difference to Law Students in Court and to the low- income community we serve.

As president of the Alumni Association, I am pleased to say that I have already become a Life Member. I hope you will follow my example and make your own generous gift.  We have set an ambitious goal of doubling the number of members of the Alumni Association this year, and we are counting on you to help us meet this challenge.

Thank you. I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,

Donald P. Salzman,
President
LSIC Alumni Association

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By joining LSIC’s Alumni Association, you can help us enhance our unique and critical mission of providing legal services to low-income clients and training third-year law students to be zealous advocates while providing vital resources to our community.

I wanted to get real life experience of what the court room felt like. I enjoyed working one on one with clients.  There is so much behind the litigation and the court case number, it is really peoples’ lives that you are affecting. – Yisel Valdez 2014

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