California Western Law Student Krista Walker Receives 2021 Alec L. Cory Pro Bono Service Award
March 29, 2021 (San Diego) – The 2021 Alec L. Cory Award for Outstanding Pro Bono Service, named after one of Procopio’s founding partners, has been awarded by the California Western School of Law to third-year law student Krista Walker. Sponsored by Procopio, the award recognizes a graduating student who best exemplifies Cory’s spirit of pro bono service to communities of need.
“At Procopio, we are proud of our commitment to providing pro bono legal services to those in need and we are proud to recognize Krista Walker for her outstanding work on behalf of underrepresented communities,” said Procopio Associate Zag Bassirian, a California Western School of Law alum who coordinates the program on behalf of the firm.
A member of the Pro Bono Honor Society, Walker is a licensed clinical social worker and certified domestic violence counselor. In San Diego, she has volunteered with the non-profit Free to Thrive in determining if survivors of human trafficking were eligible for criminal vacatur; interned with the Office of the Public Defender and appeared as a Certified Legal Intern on the record for felony arraignments and sentencing hearings; and assisted the Community Law Project in providing a range of assistance to those in need, including referrals to pro bono attorneys. Walker has also been active in legal advocacy regarding child welfare cases in her current home of Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. A graduate of MacMurray College in Jacksonville, Illinois, with a B.S. in Criminal Justice, Walker served for eight years in the U.S. Army Reserve as a Psychological Operations Specialist. She is set to complete her J.D. at California Western in May 2021.
“I am honored to receive this award and am grateful to Procopio for their generosity,” said Walker. “To me, pro bono service is an essential part of being a lawyer and is my opportunity to begin to give back.”
Alec Cory was a founder of Procopio as well as San Diego's Legal Aid Society. He was recognized for outstanding achievements by the San Diego Volunteer Lawyers Program and the San Diego County Bar Association. In May 2002, the San Diego Advocates for Social Justice honored Cory at the 11th Anniversary Celebration of Justice. As a past president of the San Diego Bar Association and as an activist and philanthropist, he received a proclamation of appreciation from then Governor Gray Davis marking April 24th "Alec Cory Day" in California. He was also named an Inaugural Fellow by the San Diego County Bar Foundation in 2005. He actively practiced law for more than 47 years before retiring in 1993. Cory was one of the first in the San Diego legal community to embrace pro bono work and provide legal services to the poor. It was a cause very dear to his heart and something he championed during his life. Cory not only set an example, but he also prodded people in his firm to give back. During a legal career that spanned more than six decades, Cory established a scholarship fund that assisted students with a demonstrated interest in public service or public interest law, and Procopio has continued in this tradition in his honor.
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