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OCTOBER 27, 2011 – Davis Wright Tremaine LLP’s Portland office has received a Pro Bono Challenge Award from the Oregon State Bar for the most pro bono hours worked by any large Oregon firm in 2010.

DWT’s Portland office, which recorded more than 5,100 pro bono hours last year, was praised for its commitment by Oregon Supreme Court Justice Paul De Muniz, who handed out the award at a reception Tuesday evening at the World Trade Center in downtown Portland.

There were a total of 70 attorneys from Portland-DWT who recorded pro bono time last year. This is the fourth time since 2003 that the firm has won this award, which is given out by the Pro Bono Committee of the Oregon Bar Association’s New Lawyers Division.

“I’m very proud of the contribution our attorneys are making in this community,” said Carol Bernick, partner-in-charge at DWT’s Portland office. “We are grateful to be recognized and are inspired to continue helping provide the most vulnerable of our society with access to legal help.”

In remarks to the audience, Chief Justice De Muniz particularly singled out the work of second-year DWT associate Paul Southwick, who argued, and won, a pro bono case before the De Muniz court earlier this year.

Southwick took the case on referral from the newly formed Oregon Pro Bono Appellate Program. He successfully argued that his client should be able to file a malpractice claim against the attorneys he had hired to represent him in a post-conviction relief proceeding. The Court of Appeals had previously affirmed the trial court’s ruling that a convict first needed to be exonerated in order to file such a claim.

The Pro Bono Fair and Social is timed to coincide with the American Bar Association’s National Celebrate Pro Bono Week. The event was attended by two other members of the Oregon Supreme Court and over 150 attorneys, as well as 18 different pro bono providers. In addition to the award for large firms, the Committee also gave awards in the categories of small, medium, and solo firms, as well as to individuals at firms and individuals who do only pro bono work.

For information on Davis Wright Tremaine’s pro bono work firmwide, visit

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Davis Wright Tremaine LLP is a national law firm with approximately 500 lawyers representing clients based throughout the United States and around the world. For more information, visit