Colby Anne Kingsbury of Faegre Baker Daniels LLP has received the Chicago Bar Association and Chicago Bar Foundation's highest pro bono honor for attorneys in private practice.
The Edward J. Lewis II Pro Bono Service Award recognizes attorneys who display a deep commitment to the fundamental principles of equal protection and equal justice in the community through outstanding pro bono service.
Kingsbury was nominated by the National Immigrant Justice Center's (NIJC) Heartland Alliance and was recognized for her significant pro bono cases helping residents of Chicago impacted by poverty, abuse and discrimination; length and breadth of pro bono commitment; success in inspiring other attorneys to do pro bono work; and accomplishments improving access to justice for disadvantaged residents of the Chicago community.
"Colby truly embodies the spirit of pro bono service," said Kathleen Lyons, executive director of the James B. Moran Center for Youth Advocacy. "She is passionate about access to justice for all in the legal, educational and community systems that can be nearly impossible for the unrepresented to navigate."
Throughout her career, Kingsbury has provided pro bono assistance to Chicago's disadvantaged, with a particular focus on assisting immigrants, youth and incarcerated individuals. She has successfully represented various inmates of Cook County Jail in civil rights actions seeking relief from excessive force and inadequate protection from other inmates. For more than a decade, she has served as co-counsel with the American Civil Liberties Union representing a class of all detained youth at the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center seeking improved confinement conditions.
Kingsbury has represented several immigrants seeking asylum in the U.S. and serves on the NIJC's Litigation Steering Committee. In 2012, she worked with the NIJC to host a clinic assisting young immigrants seeking to participate in President Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Kingsbury is also board president of the James B. Moran Center for Youth Advocacy, which provides legal and social services to low-income youth. At the Moran Center, she helped open a legal advice clinic, providing pro bono assistance to clients who previously lacked access to counsel.
Kingsbury has been a leader of the Faegre Baker Daniels Pro Bono Africa Advocacy Project. Through collaboration with The Advocates for Human Rights, the firm's lawyers have a direct opportunity to participate in advancing the rule of law in African countries.
The Chicago Bar Foundation presented Kingsbury with the Lewis Award at the Annual Pro Bono & Public Service Award Luncheon on July 16, 2013, at The Fairmont Hotel in Chicago. As part of the recognition, Kingsbury was invited to direct a $2,500 award to a grantee organization of the Chicago Bar Foundation.