Burke Lauds Sheridan Bar Association

Chief Justice Burke. (Photo by Pat Blair)
Chief Justice Burke. (Photo by Pat Blair)

Jim Burke, chief justice of the Wyoming Supreme Court, said there's something different about the Sheridan County Bar Association.

Speaking at a pro bono celebration Thursday night in Sheridan, Burke said he thinks the Sheridan County attorneys have stepped up a little bit more than others in the state.

More than a dozen attorneys from Sheridan and Johnson counties, as well as Circuit Court Judge Shelley Cundiff and District Judge John Fenn, attended the event hosted by Equal Justice Wyoming, the Wyoming State Bar and the Johnson and Sheridan County Bar Associations.

Liz Hutchinson, an attorney with Equal Justice Wyoming, said the event was to honor those attorneys who provide legal representation and services to people who otherwise wouldn't be able to afford an attorney. Judge Fenn explained the importance of pro bono work.

Burke said the federal government pulled the plug on a federal legal program in 2008/2009. But, he said, that turned out to be a good thing.

He said not that many cases were being handled through the federal program, funding was inadequate, and the program was relatively poorly organized. He said at that time, lawyers got together and approached Wyoming legislators. Through those efforts, an access for justice fund was established with the goal of creating a statewide program. The pro bono program is because of those efforts, he said.

View more photos below.

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District Court Judge John Fenn. (Photo by Pat Blair)
District Court Judge John Fenn. (Photo by Pat Blair)
Attorneys visit during the pro bono celebration. (Photo by Pat Blair)
Attorneys visit during the pro bono celebration. (Photo by Pat Blair)
Fenn, center, and Burke. Sheridan attorney Tony Wendtland is in the background. (Photo by Pat Blair)
Fenn, center, and Burke. Sheridan attorney Tony Wendtland is in the background. (Photo by Pat Blair)
SheridanWyoming.com

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