Maryland District Court Chief Judge Ben C. Clyburn told 30 managing partners of the state’s top law firms that the legal system is “facing a crisis.” He spoke at Wednesday’s 4th annual Managing Partners Breakfast, sponsored by the Equal Justice Council, the fundraising arm of Maryland Legal Aid. The meeting was hosted by Miles & Stockbridge.
Referring to the recession and decreases in funding for civil legal services, the chief judge added, “In 30 years I’ve not seen a situation like this. We’re facing the perfect storm. At district court, 70 to 80 percent of litigants appear without legal representation. We really have a gap in justice. That’s why I’m asking you to support Legal Aid.”
Clyburn said the judicial system faces “irreparable harm.”
“The confidence and trust of the people will be impacted and we won’t be able to meet our core mission, the fair administration of justice,” Clyburn said. “As a profession, you must stand up and do your fair share by helping Marylanders who can’t help themselves.”
Managing partners and firm representatives at the meeting: EJC co-chair Philip M. Andrews (Kramon & Graham), Rignal W. Baldwin, Jr. (Baldwin, Kagan & Gormley, LLC), James Bartlett III (Semmes, Bowen & Semmes), Michael Baxter (Baxter, Baker, Sidle, Conn & Jones, P.A.), C. Christopher Brown ( Brown, Goldstein & Levy, LLP), William E. Carlson ( Shapiro, Sher, Guinot & Sandler, P.A.),
Darlene Davis (Ober, Kaler, Grimes & Shriver), Jessica duHoffmann (Miles & Stockbridge, P.C.), Robert Ferguson (Ferguson, Schetelich & Ballew, P.A.),
John B. Frisch (Miles & Stockbridge, P.C.), Alan F. M. Garten (Fedder & Garten, P.A.), Yale Ginsburg (Adelberg, Rudow, Dorf & Hendler, LLC), EJC co-chair Andrew Jay Graham (Kramon & Graham, P.A.), Barry Greenberg (Rosenberg Martin Greenberg, LLP), Kelly Tubman Hardy (DLA Piper US LLP), Peter Keith (Gallagher, Evelius & Jones, LLP), Kevin Kelehan (Carney, Kelehan, Bresler, Bennett & Scherr), Albert Mezzanotte, Jr. (Whiteford, Taylor & Preston, L.L.P.), Charles O. Monk II (Saul Ewing LLP), William H. Murphy, Jr. (The Murphy Firm), EJC co-chair Benjamin Rosenberg (Rosenberg Martin Greenberg, LLP), Sanford Schreiber (Blades & Rosenfeld, P.A.), Steven Silverman (Silverman, Thompson, Slutkin & White), Howard Stevens (Wright, Constable & Skeen, L.L.P.), Steven Thomas (Thomas & Libowitz, P.A.), Raymond Truitt (Ballard Spahr Andrews & Ingersoll, LLP), Thomas J.S. Waxter, III (Goodell, DeVries, Leech & Dann, LLP), Jeffrey Wothers (Niles, Barton & Wilmer, LLP), and Jefferson V. Wright (Miles & Stockbridge, P.C.).