SAN FRANCISCO – As the San Francisco Bay Area-based Fenwick & West strives to make its New York branch as successful as its main office, the law firm also ensures that they give back to the society through corporate social responsibility initiatives.

One of the efforts from the California law firm is their project called Fenwick Gives Back. The firmwide project is anticipated as the first of Fenwick & West’s CSR initiatives in the years to come. The project is designed to combine both the key CSR responsibilities taken over by the law firm as well as the efforts brought forth by its employees. That is, the initiative would be a platform to showcase the pro-bono programs of Fenwick & West which have not only been recognized across the country but has also garnered awards.

The Fenwick Gives Back initiative would also feature the charitable contributions of the law firm as well as their volunteer efforts. These measures have been known as the company’s way of encouraging its employees to give back to society and help the less fortunate by utilizing their own expertise in various areas of the law. In a nutshell, Fenwick & West aims to not only become known as a premier law firm in the areas where it builds its offices but also as a socially responsible company that willingly lends a helping hand to those in need.

“By integrating pro bono with charitable giving and volunteer work, we can find new ways to collaborate – across organizations and across the firm – which will increase our community impact,” said Patrick Premo, the law firm’s litigation partner, via a press release on the CSR project. He is also the chairman of Fenwick & West’s Pro Bono program.

To lead this CSR initiative, Fenwick & West turned to the expertise of Hilarie Atkisson who is the Director of Corporate Social Responsibility and Pro Bono Counsel. She has over 17 years of pro bono work experience under her belt and is tasked to help the law firm contribute better in the community. She aims to work with the company to determine which concerns it must focus on and how it can help those involved. She is tasked to work closely with Premo and Julie Park, the law firm's director of pro bono services.

“Fenwick has always been at the forefront of the legal industry for innovation, and our new CSR program is a great example of that leadership,” said Atkisson in the press release. She added, “Fenwick is a tremendous place for pro bono legal services, and we have a great opportunity to incorporate elements of pro bono into a cohesive CSR program. I’m looking forward to focusing our efforts with employees, clients and other companies’ CSR programs and to maximizing our impact in the communities where we work and live.”

Atkisson is a co-chair in the California Pro Bono Coordinating Committee of the California State Bar. Prior to joining Fenwick & West, she worked as a senior manager in pro bono administration at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP. She also served as the pro bono administration director at Bingham McCutchen. Atkisson obtained her juris doctor from the University of California in 1997. She received her bachelor's degree from the Mills College in 1994.

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