A single internal e-mail from a Los Angeles-based
law firm raises $200,000 in relief - on its first day. Civil rights
attorneys band together to aid victims of hate crime in the Bay
Area and beyond. In San Francisco, law students pull together
a panel of professors to educate the public and assuage their
Across the state, the legal community - like
most citizens following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks - has leapt
at opportunities to serve. They are doing the things any individual
or business can do: donating countless funds, organizing vigils
and comforting victims. They also are aiding in ways only attorneys
can - offering their skills to pro bono efforts and examining
the emerging issues of justice and liberty.
the Los Angeles headquarters of Latham & Watkins, a corporate-finance
law firm which also has offices in New York and Washington, D.C.,
lawyers set up a charitable relief fund and e-mailed employees
at its 19 locations. By the end of the day, contributions from
750 employees reached $200,000, said Peter Gilhuly, a partner
and chair of the firm's pro bono committee.
"I think the whole country has an outpouring
of desire to help affected people," Gilhuly said.
"This is the financial community, and that's
where we practice," he continued, referring to tenants of the
World Trade Center towers in New York. "We know these people well.
I think the firm feels directly impacted by this . . . I mean,
there are people I would call every day in those buildings and
now, no one's there."
said no one he knew personally was killed in the attacks. But the
legal community in California - and in many parts of the world -
is mourning the death of environmental