The PBEye

Pro Bono As We See It
February 2, 2011

Remembering a Champion for Legal Services

The PBEye was saddened to hear of the passing of Robert Evans last month.  Evans’ role as a lobbyist with the ABA is perhaps best memorialized by his role in the preservation of the Legal Services Corporation.  The Blog of Legal Times has a moving tribute, here

“It has been rightly said that without Sargent Shriver there would be no Legal Services Corp. It is equally true that without Bob Evans, the Legal Services Corp. would not have survived,” said Esther Lardent, a longtime ABA colleague who is now president and CEO of the Pro Bono Institute. “It was a stroke of luck that Bob Evans was an ABA lobbyist in 1981 when the Reagan administration announced the defunding of the Legal Services Corporation.” That year, Lardent recalled, Evans helped mount an ABA “march on Washington” that succeeded in saving the agency. For the next 25 years, Evans helped stave off other efforts in Congress to cut the corporation’s budget. Lardent described Evans as “the key strategist and moral compass for the organized bar and legal services.”