Five hundred people gathered at the Italian Community Center on September 11, 2014, to celebrate the Legal Aid Society of Milwaukee’s 98th anniversary. The audience included Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele -- both addressed attendees and applauded everyone for their work helping Milwaukee and the surrounding community.

For almost a century, the Legal Aid Society of Milwaukee has been working “to do all things necessary for the prevention of justice.” Founded in 1916, Legal Aid’s mission has been to provide equal justice for the poor, to give voice to the voiceless and hope to the hopeless. The Society provides free services to over 8,000 of Milwaukee’s most vulnerable residents each year. Legal Aid also fights large corporations and governmental entities for structural change.

Tom Cannon, who served as the Society’s Executive Director for 43 years, had announced his retirement earlier in the year. Kimberly Walker, his successor, emceed the event. Walker recognized all sponsors of the event -- Hupy and Abraham was named a “Friend of Legal Aid” for its sponsorship.

The Thomas G. Cannon Equal Justice Medal, named after the former executive director, was awarded to three outstanding members of the community who “make exemplary contributions to the Society’s mission of equal justice for the poor.”

Conference of Legal Aid Society in session
(from left) Tom Cannon, Peter Stone and Kimberly Walker watch Dr. Lynn Sheets accept the 2014 Equal Justice Medal

Dr. Lynn Sheets, a board-certified child abuse pediatrician, was the first honoree of the event. Dr. Sheets has over 20 years of experience in evaluating children that may have been abused. She also helped develop one of the nation’s first accredited child abuse pediatrics fellowships at the Medical College of Wisconsin.

The second recipient, John F. Ebbott, advocates for the poor and has been recognized at the local, state and national level for his work as Executive Director of Legal Action of Wisconsin for almost 30 years. Legal Action of Wisconsin is a nonprofit firm that gives free legal services to low-income people.

Bill Christofferson, President of Milwaukee Homeless Veterans Initiative, received the Equal Justice medal for offering free services to homeless and at-risk veterans since 2008. Christofferson has helped over 1200 veterans and their families with housing, medical care, transportation and other necessities.

The keynote speaker was Marquette University Law School Dean Joseph Kearney. During his speech, Kearney covered the history of the Legal Aid Society and the massive impact the organization has made in the past 98 years. Kearney also shared how Marquette Law School has worked with the Society over the years.

Hupy and Abraham, S.C. contributes to many worthwhile causes. The firm is a proud supporter of the Legal Aid Society of Milwaukee that allows for equal justice of all members of the community. As a personal injury law firm, Hupy and Abraham continues to help those injured get the compensation they deserve.

Jill Erin Wellskopf
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Director of Marketing, Hupy and Abraham