June 25, 2015
The Federal Bar Council named Gibson Dunn New York associate Matthew Benjamin its Thurgood Marshall Award for Exceptional Pro Bono Service 2015 honoree. The award recognizes lawyers who have gone above and beyond in making an extraordinary contribution in the area of pro bono service.
Benjamin was honored for launching a program to provide pro bono representation to criminal defendants in the Alternative to Incarceration and post-conviction drug re-entry programs of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, concerning a wide range of civil collateral matters. He was also recognized for his ongoing commitment in representing pro bono individual clients in federal courts and agencies, including his representation of award-winning journalists in successful asylum petitions, as well as his ongoing representation of low-income nail salon workers to collect an unpaid half-million-dollar federal judgment for back wages; and for serving on the U.S. Sentencing Commission’s Practitioner’s Advisory Group and the Federal Bar Council’s Committee on Sentencing and Alternatives to Incarceration, including developing a searchable internal electronic database about each sentencing within the Eastern District of New York; and for assisting U.S. Pretrial Services’ leadership to locate non-profit and private-sector workforce development opportunities to improve job training and placement for federal supervisees.
The award was presented at the Federal Bar Council’s summer reception, co-sponsored by the Council’s Public Service Committee and its First Decade Committee, held on Thursday, June 25, 2015.