This week is the National Pro Bono Celebration. Each day this week, Texas Bar Blog will feature Texas attorneys who provide pro bono services in their communities. The service of these attorneys, and the hundreds of pro bono attorneys like them in Texas, ensures access to justice for many of the most vulnerable Texans. For a list of Pro Bono Celebration events in your area, click here.
In addition to a busy solo practice, Robert Black finds time to donate his pro bono services regularly to Volunteer Legal Services (VLS) in Austin. For the past two decades, Mr. Black has led attendance at the twice weekly evening clinics hosted by VLS, and he has also ranked near the highest among volunteers for acceptance of pro bono cases for representation.
“Everyone has an obligation to serve their community,” Mr. Black said. “Only attorneys have the education and the skills to address the legal needs of their community. When I take cases with Volunteer Legal Services, I have the opportunity to help people in need in a way that few others can.”
Mr. Black has used those legal skills to meet the legal needs of many low-income families in Austin. When VLS had a large number of clients in need of Chapter 7 bankruptcy relief, Mr. Black decided to become a bankruptcy practitioner solely to serve those clients. Through his outstanding pro bono work with VLS, he has brought relief to many of the people in his community who are going through very difficult financial times. “This is community service that only attorneys can provide, and we should be mindful of that obligation,” he said.