Sheppard Mullin Awards Andrew J. Guilford Pro Bono Attorney of the Year
April 10, 2006Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP announced today that it will honor Andy Guilford with the firm's annual SMRH Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award, an award that recognizes the important community service work done by Sheppard Mullin attorneys. As part of the award presentation on April 19, the firm will donate $5,000 to the Public Law Center in Orange County. The Public Law Center, Orange County's pro bono law firm, is committed to providing access to justice for the poor. Through volunteers and staff, the Public Law Center provides free civil legal services, including counseling, individual representation, community education, and strategic litigation and advocacy to challenge societal injustices. “Andy has been a stalwart Sheppard Mullin pro bono time donor and supporter for 30 years,” said Guy Halgren, chair of the firm's Executive Committee. "He's been a pro bono advocate within and outside the firm, and it is not an exaggeration to say that he's done as much work to provide access to justice for the indigent as any other lawyer in the State of California, including a number of successful initiatives during his tenure as the California State Bar President." "During his time at Sheppard Mullin, Andy has been a leader in indigent pro bono legal efforts," commented the firm's Pro Bono chair Bob Gerber. "He has personally accepted many challenging pro bono cases, and has encouraged his fellow attorneys to accept pro bono work. In awarding this year's honor, we would be remiss if we did not consider his long standing and exceptional contributions to the firm's pro bono efforts and to the pro bono legal community." Guilford has donated on average some 200 indigent pro bono legal services hours annually over the last three years. He has worked on a variety of cases over the last few years, including: (a) a challenging case in which he and a number of associates billed hundreds of hours representing an indigent domestic violence victim; (b) a unique case seeking to protect civil and religious rights for volunteers assisting the indigent; (c) some straightforward landlord/tenant disputes for indigent clients; and (d) a difficult case which restored child support rights for a Filipina and her child. Guilford was a recent president of the Public Law Center, has served on the Center's Board of Directors for decades, and is still serving as the organization's Past President. He was also appointed by the Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court to the Self-Represented Litigants Task Force. "I am honored by the firm's recognition and support," said Guilford. "Pro bono offers an excellent opportunity to serve the community, while achieving personal fulfillment and professional development. I am pleased that Sheppard Mullin's donation will support the vital work performed by the Public Law Center." Guilford is a Business Trial Practice Group partner in the Orange County office who is in the process of leaving Sheppard Mullin to become a federal district court judge in the Central District of California in Santa Ana. Sheppard Mullin's SMRH Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award is the firm's highest pro bono honor to recognize and reward the important community service work done by Sheppard Mullin attorneys. Sheppard Mullin recognizes its recipient on behalf of all its attorneys that provide high-caliber legal and professional services to persons of limited means and to charitable and civic organizations. About Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP is a full service AmLaw 100 firm with more than 480 attorneys in nine offices located throughout California and in New York and Washington, D.C. The firm's California offices are located in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Century City, Orange County, Del Mar Heights and San Diego. Sheppard Mullin provides legal expertise and counsel to U.S. and international clients in a wide range of practice areas, including Antitrust, Corporate and Securities; Entertainment, Media and Communications; Finance and Bankruptcy; Government Contracts; Intellectual Property; Labor and Employment; Litigation; Real Estate/Land Use; Tax/Employee Benefits/Trusts & Estates; and White Collar Defense. The firm was founded in 1927.