NLADA RECOGNIZES IRA NEWMAN FOR EXCEPTIONAL SERVICE TO CIVIL LEGAL AID COMMUNITY
"2002 Denison Ray Award Winner"
WASHINGTON, DC, October 29, 2002 — The National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA) will honor Ira Newman, directing attorney of the Appalachian Research & Defense Fund of Kentucky, Inc. (Appalred), with the 2002 Denison Ray Award to be given during its Annual Conference Awards Dinner on Friday, November 15, at the Hilton Milwaukee City Center in Wisconsin.
Honoring an individual who has provided exceptional service to the legal aid community as a staff member, client board member or volunteer of a provider program, the "Denny" is named for a career legal aid activist. Denison Ray served as executive director of legal services programs in Missouri, Maine, North Carolina and New York and was a long-time leader of the national Project Advisory Group.
"Ira's legal work has set an inspirational example of industriousness, creativity and determination," said Larry York, executive director of the Appalachian Research & Defense Fund of Kentucky, Inc., in his nomination letter. "Ira has always exhibited a passionate quest for fairness and equality, not only among the clients he serves, but also among the employees with whom he works. … He has served thousands of clients in his tenure with Appalred with compassion and vigor. He has been an inspiration to members of this program and to the local bar where he practices. He has worked tirelessly for his clients and for low income people in his community."
Newman, a native of Eastern Kentucky, directs the Richmond office of Appalred. This office serves as a centralized intake location for Appalred’s entire 37-county area. He has been with Appalred for 25 years, having begun his legal career there as a Reginald Heber Smith Fellow. In that time he has served thousands of individuals in a wide variety of cases ranging from black lung to consumer law, domestic relations and housing, and has worked with other nonprofits to develop housing development corporations that have built and refurbished many homes.
He also served as managing attorney of the Kentucky Migrant Legal Services Project, a joint project between Appalred and Texas Rural Legal Aid to assist migrant workers with labor disputes in Kentucky. After Kentucky’s Educational Reform Act brought site-based management to the school systems in Kentucky, Newman volunteered as a pro bono attorney for the site-based councils, and also served on the local site-based counsel in his home community of Berea. Since 1990, Newman has served on the Berea Planning and Zoning Commission and presently serves as its chair. In 1995 the National Associations of Towns and Townships, in conjunction with the Wal-Mart Corporation, made an economic development grant in his name to the city of Berea because of his leadership on the local level.
For more information on NLADA awards, visit www.nlada.org.
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The National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA) champions effective legal assistance for people who cannot afford counsel, serves as a collective voice for both civil legal services and public defense services throughout the nation and provides a wide range of services and benefits to its individual and organizational members. Founded in 1911, NLADA is the oldest and largest national, nonprofit membership organization devoting all of its resources to advocating equal access to justice for all Americans.