The Benton Franklin Legal Aid Society recognized two local attorneys with its highest awards for service to the community for 2021.
The nonprofit matches Tri-City residents who can’t afford attorneys to represent them with volunteer lawyers to handle noncriminal cases, ranging from evictions to bankruptcy, family law, protection orders and more.
Thomas J. Atwood, of Atwood Law Office in Kennewick, was honored with the 2021 Al Yencopal Award. The award is named for the late judge who was a key supporter of bringing low- or no-cost legal services to the community, honors a local attorney for their longtime commitment to providing free services to clients who can’t afford them.
Atwood has been a member of the Washington Bar Association since 1985 and focuses on bankruptcy, disability and family law as well as criminal matters.
Cortney Corbet, an associate attorney in the Richland office of Gravis Law PLLC, received the Gene Schuster Award, named for the late Legal Aid founder and typically given to volunteers who are earlier in their careers.
She was admitted to the Washington Bar Association in 2017 and focuses on family law and litigation.
The Legal Aid Society honored Atwood, Corbet and others who stepped up to represent clients in non-criminal matters at its Dec. 3 event. Benton County Prosecutor Andy Miller spoke at the event.
Barb Otte-Potter, executive director, said it also recognized individuals and firms for their work in the past year, marked by a surge in demand for renters facing eviction as a pandemic ban expired in October.
Go to bflegalaid.org
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