Posted March 15, 20229:00 am
With heavy heart we share the news that Susan Stauffer, longtime Legal Aid attorney, has died.
Susan spent 54 years as an advocate at The Legal Aid Society of Cleveland – 2 years as a law student intern from Case Western Reserve University followed by 52 years as an attorney. She built Legal Aid’s Family Practice Group at a time when many legal aid organizations did not practice family law. Susan saw the need to represent clients as they experienced one of the most painful and vulnerable times of their lives; she wanted to ensure they were able to create safe, economically secure homes for themselves and their children. Most importantly, Susan helped her clients find and use their voice.
In recent years, nearly every Saturday morning Susan could be found advising clients and volunteer attorneys at one of Legal Aid’s Brief Advice Clinics at libraries and community centers. She relished supporting clients and volunteers alike. Mentoring corporate lawyers so that they became comfortable advising clients on family law issues.
Susan was well-respected among her peers as an expert in Family Law. She is one of a very few Ohio attorneys with expertise of the intersection of family law and military benefits.
Even after many years of practicing law, Susan focused on improving her already highly developed litigation, negotiation, and advocacy skills. She stayed updated on every advancement in statutory and case law as well as changes in court practices. She engaged in ferocious conversation with colleagues as she formulated strategies for individual cases and approaches to address systemic issues. Her intellectual curiosity combined with compassion for clients and their children made her a formidable advocate.
We will greatly miss our close friend, colleague, and advocate.
Funeral arrangements are pending.