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.
Public service has always been a major part of Lyla Malolepszy’s career. Even before she obtained her paralegal degree in 2003, she started volunteering with Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas (LANWT), and every year since then she has continued to contribute enough pro bono service to be a member of the Texas Pro Bono College. Her exemplary service earned Ms. Malolepszy the 2010 Paralegal Division Exceptional Pro Bono Service Award.
Ms. Malolepszy has worked hard to encourage pro bono service from attorneys and paralegals in her community. In addition to assisting on pro bono cases with LANWT, she recruits and trains other volunteers for its pro bono program. While working full time as a paralegal for Donald Johnston in Sherman, she also serves on the Professional Development Committee and Pro Bono Ad Hoc Committee of the Paralegal Division, and she is the Executive Coordinator of the Grayson County Bar Association. As a result of her efforts, many more attorneys and paralegals in Grayson County have volunteered their services after learning how they can help meet the legal needs of low-income families in their community.
“Lyla is the epitome of pro bono service,” wrote Debbie Oaks Guerra. “She inspires everyone around her with her dedication and caring. Her pro bono volunteerism is making a real difference in her community and should serve as an example to others in the profession of what can be achieved when we use our special skills as paralegals for those less fortunate than ourselves.”