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    January 23, 2009  
Justice O’Connor;
Jones Day;
Hunton & Williams

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Last night, Justice O’Connor stopped by Jones Day to give a hearty endorsement of the Public-Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan, which combines State Department and private sector resources to train Afghani attorneys and strengthen the rule of law in the country. It has raised $1.3M in cash and in-kind donations since launching a year ago. But a visit from Justice O’Connor? Priceless.


We caught the Justice in top form last night having a nosh with Jones Day government contracts partner Peter Garvin, who doubles as a member of the Partnership’s executive committee, and former Massachusetts Lt. Gov. Kerry Healy, now a visiting fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School. The event honored a delegation of women judges, prosecutors, and defense attorneys from Afghanistan, who were wrapping up a two-week visit to the U.S. full of seminars and roundtables. The Justice’s message to them: the rule of law is our best hope for peace in the world, and you can’t have an impartial system without the participation of women.


More good news for the Partnership—at the end of the program Publishers Clearinghouse Jones Day stepped up with a $25,000 donation. Here, pro bono partner Laura Parcher explains to Principal Deputy Asst. Secretary of State Bill McGlynn and Partnership Co-Chair Robert O’Brien, who’s the partner in charge of Arent Fox’s LA office, how to fit this through the ATM machine. In her speech, Justice O’Connor gave Bill a good-natured badgering. She insisted that he bring the Partnership’s work to the attention of new Secretary of State Clinton, even though he assured her it was already on her radar. “Tell her again,” the Justice said.


We were under instruction not to show the faces of the brave women attorneys—and we don’t say that lightly. The predecessor of this chief prosecutor, we learned, was a victim of assassination. Speaking with her is Tim Nustraty, the State Dept. rep who keeps the Partnership going at Foggy Bottom. He tells us that law schools such as Harvard, Stanford, UCLA, Georgetown and American have donated a dozen LLM scholarships to be used by visiting Afghan law students this summer.

Charity Goes Viral at Hunton

How did Hunton & Williams turn a $160 contribution to So Others Might Eat into over $7,500? It started when the firm decided to donate surplus funds from a holiday brunch to SOME. Counsel Brent Fewell then pledged in an email to match the donation. Within minutes the email had taken off, and others were chipping in—even an associate from the Brussels office. The check was presented to SOME rep Tracy Monson (holding the pricey envelope, above) at a happy hour on Friday. Celebrating with her: Phyllis Copeland of Hunton’s community service committee, director of administration Bonnie Montgomery, and DC managing partner Andrea Bear Field.


Evan Wolff, corporate finance guy Jack Molenkamp, and energy regulatory specialist Mike Sweeney raised glasses to the occasion. The beer selection at Hunton & Williams, by the way, is serious business—we learned that assistant librarian Harold Schlicht brews his own at home and hand-selects the offerings for happy hours (this may explain the laughter when we asked for a Milwaukee’s Best).  Evan worked on President Obama’s homeland security advisory committee and, when not imbibing, advises companies regulated by the Dept. of Homeland Security.

John Ford is Bisnow’s Legal Editor. Send him your beer suggestions and/or story ideas to john@bisnow.com.

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