The State Bar of Texas, the Texas Access to Justice Commission, the American Bar Association, and others proudly support the celebration of National Pro Bono Week (Oct. 20-26). Pro Bono Week is an opportunity to educate the public about the good work the legal community is doing to improve the lives of vulnerable Texans and to encourage more individuals in the legal community to get involved in pro bono support of the legal system. Today, we are featuring James A. Rodriguez for his invaluable work in the San Antonio legal community.
A 2008 graduate of St. Mary’s University School of Law, Rodriguez has been volunteering through the San Antonio Community Justice Program since 2009. The program is a collaborative effort by the San Antonio Bar Association and Texas RioGrande Legal Aid to provide free neighborhood-based legal services to individuals who may not otherwise have access to the legal system. Upon starting his legal career, Rodriguez made the personal commitment to ensure that a large part of his professional career would be devoted to mentoring, professional development, and community service.
Dedicated and passionate about giving back to his community, Rodriguez rarely misses the opportunity to volunteer at the CJP’s monthly family, wills, and veterans clinics. Since he began volunteering through the CJP, Rodriguez has taken more than 65 pro bono cases and helped many low-income clients and veterans access legal services that previously seemed out of reach. He often takes more than one case during the clinics and will take cases that are more complex and complicated.
In 2011, Rodriguez was honored as the Community Justice Program’s 2011 Pro Bono Attorney of the Year. This year, he received the San Antonio Young Lawyers Association 2012-2013 Outstanding Young Lawyer Award. When not helping clients, Rodriguez serves on the San Antonio Bar Association’s District Courts and Publications committees. He was also the first presiding municipal judge of the city of Von Ormy and has served in that position since May 2010, taking great pride in helping to build that court from the ground up as the newest municipal court in Bexar County.
Show You Care: If you would like to serve as a mentor or need mentoring for your pro bono case, please contact the State Bar of Texas Legal Access Division for more information at (800) 204-2222, ext. 1855, or firstname.lastname@example.org.