Profile: The C. Lyonel Jones Pro Bono Immigration Committee

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C. Lyonel Jones Pro Bono Immigration Committee  

July, 2011 – Legal Aid’s Volunteer Lawyers Program (VLP) has numerous facets, connecting with various legal practices. The VLP also has many partners. The C. Lyonel Jones Pro Bono Immigration Committee, founded in 2006 by attorneys Stacy Cozart and Jennifer Peyton, is dedicated to the memory of the former Legal Aid executive director.  

In partnership with Legal Aid’s VLP, the Pro Bono Immigration Committee holds two adjustment-of-status clinics for refugees each year. The VLP and the Committee also organize Citizenship Day, a day annually designated by the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) for nationwide “citizenship drives”: clinics which provide legal assistance to lawful permanent residents eligible for naturalization.  

Stacy Cozart, Esq. with VLP Managing Attorney Ann McGowan Porath, Esq.

Ms. Peyton recalls, “Our first clinic took all day. There was a great learning curve.” Now, in just a few hours, committee members help entire families through the adjustment-of-status process.   The Committee also takes individual case referrals for clients Legal Aid cannot serve. The work is emotional: Many clients have been persecuted in their home countries. Ms. Cozart says: “Every case, you give a little bit because you’re helping people through a daunting process. There are a certain few you have that live long after the case is closed.”  

To volunteer with Legal Aid, please email probono@lasclev.org or visit lasclev.org/volunteer  

Jenna Peyton, Esq. discusses a Citizenship Day case with Legal Aid staff attorney Camille Gill, Esq.

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