Latin Lawyer and the Vance Center's Pro Bono Survey 2020 / A critical state / Taking responsibility / Clearing the way / Leading Lights / Paving the way / Setting a precedent / Lifetime achievement award
The worldwide covid-19 pandemic meant 2020 was a year of unique and severe challenges for almost everyone. Among other profound changes, it was a catalyst for greater reliance on digital communications. But while this new, digital era gives pro bono lawyers the potential to reach a broader pool of clients, there is a very real risk that it is precisely those clients who remain out of digital reach because they lack access to smartphones, social media and other online platforms.
We discuss this threat in our pro bono survey, published in conjunction with the Cyrus R. Vance Center for International Justice. For this thirteenth annual survey, we received a record-breaking number of responses, one sign that more and more firms are concerned about how they can direct their services to benefit the most vulnerable sectors of society.
We have also identified our annual Leading Lights, law firms making a noteworthy contribution to strengthening Latin America’s pro bono culture.
In keeping with the theme of this issue, we are publishing an interview with one of pro bono’s most vocal and committed supporters, Shearman & Sterling’s Antonia Stolper. An advocate for free legal aid in Latin America for nearly two decades, as well as one of the region’s top capital markets lawyers, Stolper is the recipient of our Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of her career to date.
The digital transformation shaping pro bono is something all lawyers are adjusting to, as is Latin Lawyer. In 2020, in recognition of the sweeping adoption of remote working at almost all law firms, we began publishing our quarterly magazine online only, making it accessible to a broader audience. However, the pandemic has pushed further changes in the consumption of our content, meaning many of you feel like you have fewer chunks of time to sit with a ‘magazine’ and read it all. So now, we are going one step further, adopting a flexible schedule for the content you are used to seeing in these magazines, one which will allow us to more frequently deliver in-depth articles on high interest subjects, as and when they emerge. You’ll see these articles in our daily newsletter and on latinlawyer.com.
It means that, after two decades, this marks the last issue of Latin Lawyer’s magazine (but not the end of articles like the ones contained here). A huge thank you for your support and interest in our magazine over the past 20 years. We hope you enjoy what we have planned next.
Over nearly three decades, Antonia Stolper – head of Shearman & Sterling LLP’s Latin America affinity group – has made a name for herself as a force of nature in the region’s capital markets space, as well as driving conversations about pro bono and gender diversity. We speak to the winner of Latin Lawyer’s Lifetime Achievement Award, as she steps back from Shearman’s partnership to become of counsel.