Fish & Richardson is donating $50,000 to civil legal aid organizations across the country – representing $140 per attorney – to honor and celebrate the legacy of Frederick Fish, the firm’s founder who was admitted to the bar 140 years ago in May 1878. Frederick Fish was one of the most well-known patent attorneys in history. He represented the world’s greatest innovators, including Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison and the Wright Brothers.
Fish was the leading patent lawyer of his generation and was believed to have appeared in more patent cases at the U.S. Supreme Court than any other lawyer. But perhaps more importantly, Fish was known for his commitment to public service, devoting a substantial portion of his time to advancing quality public education.
“The spirit of generosity that embodied our founder Frederick Fish lives on today in everyone at Fish. We are committed to pro bono advocacy as an integral part of our professional culture, and many of our lawyers take on pro bono matters as part of their professional lives,” said Peter Devlin, President of Fish & Richardson. “Funding for civil legal aid for low-income Americans is in crisis, so there is no better way to honor our founder’s deep commitment to making the world a better place than to provide financial support to the legal aid organizations that are doing such vital work in their communities.”
Fish’s $50,000 donation will be split among the following civil legal aid organizations – which serve the communities where the firm’s 11 U.S. offices are based.
• Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid (El Paso, Austin and the Rio Grande Valley) provides free legal services, represents migrant and seasonal farm workers throughout Texas.
• Northeast Legal Aid (Boston, MA) provides free high-quality civil legal services to the poor and elderly in Northeastern Massachusetts.
• Community Legal Aid Society, Inc. (Delaware) provides free legal services to people with disabilities, the elderly, victims of housing discrimination, people living in poverty, and victims of domestic violence.
• Neighborhood Legal Services Program (Washington, D.C.) provides free legal information, advice, and representation to low-income District of Columbia residents on civil legal matters.
• Legal Services NYC (New York, NY) provides free civil legal assistance to low-income New Yorkers.
• The Legal Aid Society of Santa Clara County (Silicon Valley, CA) provides free, civil legal services for low-income persons unable to obtain access to the judicial system through other avenues.
Fish has a robust internal infrastructure to support pro bono work; provides full hours credit for approved pro bono matters; partners with many preeminent legal services and social justice organizations around the country to help bridge the justice gap felt by so many Americans; and regularly provides substantial financial support to numerous legal aid organizations across the country.