Pro Bono

For more than a century, our attorneys, paralegals and staff have volunteered time and counsel to help people in need and to make our communities stronger, more resilient, more welcoming places to live and work. We invest our pro bono resources in programs and communities around the country and the world.


  • We are a signatory to the Pro Bono Institute’s Law Firm Pro Bono Challenge®, pledging to donate 3 percent of total billable hours to pro bono each year.
  • In 2016, the firm exceeded this goal, donating a total of 23,014 pro bono hours worth more than $8 million in free legal services.
  • In 2016, all of our offices and every practice at the firm participated in the pro bono program.
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The Deinard Legal Clinic
Over the last 24 years, 2,723 clients from 56 countries around the world have received 112,213 hours of pro bono legal help through the Deinard Legal Clinic, located inside the Community-University Health Care Center in Minneapolis.


The Adopt-a-Neighborhood Partnership with the Marlborough Coalition

For eight years, firm attorneys have represented the coalition and its residents to help facilitate compatible new development and redevelopment projects, encourage rehabilitation of the neighborhood’s housing stock through the Abandoned Housing Act and nuisance actions, and restore access to health care, healthy food and recreational spaces.

In the summer of 2016, transactional attorneys in the Minneapolis office teamed up with Mid-Minnesota Legal Assistance and the Northside Residents Redevelopment Council to replicate the Marlborough work in the near north and Willard-Hay neighborhoods of north Minneapolis using a grant from the Minnesota Supreme Court to MMLA.



In 2016, Stinson was named a “Defender of Justice” for its pledge to donate $275 per attorney per year to Legal Aid of Western Missouri’s 2017-2019 Justice for All Campaign.

The firm co-sponsored its eighth Equal Justice Works Fellow at Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid and committed to funding its ninth EJW Fellow in fall of 2017 at a new medical legal partnership in Willmar, Minnesota.


The Advocates for Human Rights
In 2016, we logged more than 1,200 hours on 23 different AHR matters, including individual asylum matters, international impact litigation before the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, and research and advocacy efforts before the United Nations and other international bodies.

The Fight to End Human Trafficking
We are actively engaged in the fight to end labor and sex trafficking. Attorneys and paralegals are representing foreign national and domestic survivors of human trafficking in applying for T visas and, later, legal permanent residence. We also provide assistance with identity theft, expungement, workers’ compensation, name change petitions andother issues. Attorneys in our Denver office are participating in the new ALIGHT (Alliance to Lead Impact in Global Human Trafficking) Legal Needs Matching Project, which is using technology to connect human trafficking survivors to critical legal services in real time.


North Star Lawyers—For providing 50 hours or more of pro bono legal services, 87 Minnesota attorneys qualified for this honor in 2016.

Missouri Bar Pro Bono Wall of Fame—For providing 40 hours or more of pro bono legal services, 50 of our Missouri-based attorneys qualified for this honor in 2016.

The Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll—In 2016, five DC attorneys completed more than 50 hours to qualify for the Honor Roll, and another nine completed more than 100 hours to qualify for the High Honor Roll.

Robert C. Welch Volunteer Attorney Project Award—Legal Aid of Western Missouri’s Volunteer Attorney Project selected Partner Robin Carlson to receive the 2016 award for her pro bono work on behalf of school children in matters involving special education and student discipline.

Missouri Bar Pro Bono Publico Award and the Legal Services of Eastern Missouri Gerald R. Ortbals Outstanding Law Practice Award—For legal services provided to low income individuals, victims of domestic violence, and parents and guardians, our St. Louis office was honored with these two awards in 2016.

The Advocates for Human Rights’ Volunteer Award—A team of attorneys from the firm’s St. Louis and Washington, DC offices received this award for their work documenting the Ethiopian government’s use of lethal force to respond to the peaceful protests of minority students.

Faculty of Federal Advocates’ Pro Bono AwardsFive attorneys and the firm’s Denver office were honored for their participation in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado’s Civil Pro Bono Panel Program and for their work on behalf of federal pro se prisoners.