The PBEye

Pro Bono As We See It
June 11, 2013

Yahoo! Hosts Pro Bono Clinic

In-house pro bono continues to thrive in Silicon Valley. On May 31, CPBO, the legal department of Yahoo! Inc., Fenwick & West LLP*†, and the Justice & Diversity Center of The San Francisco Bar Association co-hosted a Clinic in a BoxSM Program for in-house volunteers from several of Yahoo! Inc.’s Bay Area offices.

Held at the Yahoo! headquarters in Sunnyvale, Calif., the Clinic attracted lawyers and other professional staff from Yahoo!’s legal department, including General Counsel and Secretary Ron Bell, who honored Yahoo!’s commitment to service by joining his colleagues to provide pro bono legal services to local nonprofit organizations. Bell also launched the Clinic by thanking Fenwick for its attorneys’ expertise and support during the program, the Justice & Diversity Center for its work with the client organizations, and CPBO for helping Yahoo! create and expand the legal department’s pro bono program.

The Clinic began with an hour and a half training session led by expert attorneys from Fenwick, covering areas of law relevant to nonprofit organizations. Following the training, volunteers from the Yahoo! legal department met in teams of two or three with the nonprofit clients to conduct a legal audit of each organization. During the meetings, volunteers referred to a questionnaire developed by CPBO and tailored to California state law by Fenwick. The volunteers identified issues of concern and provided guidance to the nonprofit clients, as needed.

The clients served during the Clinic provide a wide range of services to the greater community, including child development, elder assistance, and housing support. Afterward, one of the clients remarked how the Clinic was a “great session and a fantastic opportunity thanks to the efforts of the lawyers.”

The Clinic in a BoxSM Program is a time-limited pro bono opportunity that allows lawyers and other legal department staff to work together to provide meaningful assistance to organizations that serve the community. If your legal department is interested in co-hosting a Clinic in a BoxSM Program, contact Eve Runyon, director of CPBO, for more information.


* denotes a Signatory to the Law Firm Pro Bono Challenge®
† denotes a Member of the Law Firm Pro Bono Project