Hungarian Pro Bono Awards Announced
Awards sponsored by PILnet and the Hungarian Bar Association
Recognizing the growing importance pro bono legal assistance in Hungary, PILnet: The Global Network for Public Interest Law in collaboration with the Hungarian Bar Association has announced the winners of the inaugural Pro Bono Awards.
The ceremony, held at the Hall of the Hungarian Supreme Court in Budapest on 19 November—Hungarian Attorney’s Day—recognized Tamás Gerő, Gábor Győző, and Márk Pető, who jointly shared the 2011 Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year Award, along with Budapest’s Oppenheim Law Office, which received the 2011 Pro Bono Law Firm of the Year Award.
Gerő, Győző, and Pető were honored for providing regular legal advice from Budapest via Skype to inhabitants of disadvantaged villages densely populated with Roma in Heves and Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén counties. The attorneys, who work independent of each other, were nominated by the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union, which supports the Hungarian Helsinki Committee at the ELTE University Faculty of Law through an anti-discrimination legal clinic. The Oppenheim Law Office was recognized for providing legal assistance to victims of discrimination identified by the legal clinic.
Members of the selection committee included Janos Banati, president of the Hungarian Bar Association; Szilvia Gyurkó of the ELTE University Faculty of Law Center for Professional Practice; Sándor Fülöp, Parliamentary Commissioner for Future Generations (the so-called Green Ombudsman); and András F. Tóth of the Hungarian Volunteer Centre Foundation.