February 28, 2008

Thomas Crosby and Richard Duncan Receive Benson Awards for Pro Bono Service

Faegre & Benson LLP recently named Thomas M. Crosby Jr. and Richard A. Duncan, both partners in the Minneapolis office, recipients of the 2007 John C. Benson Pro Bono Award in recognition of their outstanding commitments to pro bono legal service. Along with the honor, each recipient is entitled to designate a community nonprofit organization to receive a $3,000 contribution from Faegre & Benson.

Crosby, a former chair of the firm's management committee and longtime director of the Faegre & Benson Foundation, was recognized for his leadership role over 42 years with the firm in expanding its capacity to provide pro bono legal representation as well as its leadership-level charitable support of numerous community legal aid organizations. Crosby's work has shaped Faegre & Benson's firm-wide charitable giving policy, strengthened its public service culture and fueled several major pro bono and legal services initiatives to serve low-income clients.

Crosby has served on the governing boards of many of the community's major cultural and philanthropic institutions, including the Greater Twin Cities United Way, the Minnesota Orchestra, the Walker Art Center and the Blake School. In 2003, he was inducted into the Mpls. St. Paul Magazine Volunteer Hall of Fame.

He has chosen Greater Twin Cities United Way to receive a $3,000 donation from the firm.

Duncan was honored for his contributions to the firm's nationally recognized pro bono environmental and public interest law practice over the past 20 years. In more than 50 matters—including many high-profile cases across the country—he has successfully represented clients in litigation to protect endangered species, migratory birds, wilderness areas and national parks, as well as to advocate for clean air and water, and for the humane treatment of animals. He has been a leader in the firm's work to protect the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota, and he mentors younger Faegre & Benson lawyers on environmental cases.

In 2007, he received the William O. Douglas Award from the Sierra Club for his outstanding commitment to pro bono environmental work. He currently serves on the board of directors of Fresh Energy, a Minnesota nonprofit advocating for clean and renewable energy.

Duncan has elected to split the $3,000 donation between the Sierra Club Foundation and the Wilderness Program of the Izaak Walton League of America.

Faegre & Benson has a long history of serving the legal needs of persons of limited means and nonprofit interests. The firm's lawyers engage in pro bono work on matters ranging from public policy advocacy on issues of national scope to direct representation of the neediest and most vulnerable individuals in our communities. Faegre & Benson is a founding member of the American Bar Association Law Firm Pro Bono Project and participates in the Law Firm Pro Bono Challenge by committing annually to provide pro bono legal representation equivalent to at least 3 percent of its total billable hours. The firm has met or exceeded the Challenge every year since its inception in 1994.

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