Sheppard Mullin Awards Malika Levarlet 2011 Pro Bono Attorney of the Year
Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP announced today that it has awarded associate Malika Levarlet the firm's 2011 Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award. This award honors and recognizes the important community service work done by Sheppard Mullin attorneys. Levarlet, a 2006 cum laude graduate of American University's Washington College of Law, is based in the firm’s Washington, D.C. office and a member of Sheppard Mullin's Corporate practice group.
Levarlet was the first associate in Sheppard Mullin's Washington, D.C. office to take on a political asylum case through Human Rights First. The applicant was from Cameroon and spoke only French. As so often happens in political asylum cases, the applicant became very dependent on Levarlet not just for legal advice but for personal support and guidance. She put forth tremendous effort to help this client get through the very difficult process of recounting her horrible story and, ultimately, to gain political asylum in the US. Levarlet took on her second case through Human Rights First even before the first one was finished. Even beyond the cases that she has taken on, Malika is an active member of the pro bono committee, has devoted countless hours to inspiring others to take on pro bono cases, and often helps them work through their own cases.
Levarlet remarked, "I am truly honored that the firm would recognize me for my efforts to improve the administration of justice for the less fortunate. Pro bono is one of the finest traditions of our profession. My work through Human Rights First and other pro bono clients has offered an excellent opportunity to serve the community, while achieving personal fulfillment and professional development."
Partner Daniel L. Brown, Sheppard Mullin's pro bono committee chair, commented, “When Human Rights First informed us that Sheppard Mullin had been selected to receive the prestigious Frankel Award for pro bono law firm of the year, HRF specifically mentioned how Malika's clients enthusiastically praised her work, and that her work weighed heavily in their decision to give Sheppard Mullin the Frankel Award. Malika simply exemplifies pro bono commitment, effort and success."
Sheppard Mullin's Pro Bono Attorney of the Year Award is the firm's highest pro bono honor, and was implemented to recognize and reward the important community service work done by Sheppard Mullin attorneys.