Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Page 3


Legal Aid Foundation to Honor Lee Edmon With Maynard Toll Award


By a MetNews Staff Writer


The Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles is set to honor Los Angeles Superior Court Presiding Judge Lee Edmon; Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP; and venture capitalist and inactive attorney Edward Thomas “Tom” Unterman at its 13th Access to Justice Awards gala on Nov. 16.

The event is slated to begin at 7 p.m. at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Edmon has been selected to receive the Maynard Toll Award for Distinguished Public Service, and Munger, Tolles & Olson was chosen to receive LAFLA’s Pro Bono Service Award, a spokesperson for the organization said. Unterman is this year’s recipient of the Access to Justice Award.

The spokesperson said Edmon is being recognized for her years of participation in charitable and civic activities, including serving as president of the Los Angeles County Bar Association in 1998-99, and was a member of LAFLA’s Board of Directors from 1995-2000.

Edmon was appointed to the bench in 2000 by then-Governor Gray Davis after spending 13 years as a civil litigator with the international corporate law firm of Dewey Ballantine LLP—now Dewey LaBoeuf.

She was elected assistant presiding judge in 2010 and became the first female presiding judge in the court’s 121-year history in January.

Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP is being recognized for having contributed thousands of hours over the last several years to partner with LAFLA in protecting the legal rights of elderly, disabled and very low-income recipients of Section 8 housing threatened with illegal eviction, the spokesperson said.

 The firm recently helped win a major victory for low-income tenants’ rights when the  Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in Barrientos v. 1801-1825 Morton LLC that Section 8 tenants are entitled to the same protections against arbitrary evictions that other renters have in Los Angeles and other rent control jurisdictions.

Unterman is a member of the California Commission on Access to Justice, a collaborative effort involving state and federal judges, senior lawyers from the private and public sector, professors, and business, labor and other civic leaders, dedicated to finding long-term solutions to the chronic lack of legal assistance available for low-income, vulnerable Californians.

He practiced with Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP and Morrison & Foerster before joining the Times Mirror Company, eventually becoming its executive vice president and chief financial officer.

The attorney later left the Times to found his venture capital firm, Rustic Canyon Partners. He registered as inactive with the State Bar in 2001.

The Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles was founded in 1929 with the goal of providing direct representation, systems change and community education for poor and low-income people in greater Los Angeles. The group says it serves more than 70,000 individuals and families each year.


Copyright 2011, Metropolitan News Company