Spotlight on DLA Piper: 2011 Hero Award Winner – Law Firm Category
The 2012 Everyday Hero Award program will launch soon so check out the winners from last year and maybe you can be a winner too!
Background of Hero Award Program:
Three customers from the Thomson Reuters Fraud Prevention & Investigations business were selected as winners of the first-ever Hero Award in 2011 for their submissions of compelling success stories brought about through the use of one of Thomson Reuters public records search products: CLEAR, Westlaw PeopleMap or Batch Services. The Hero Award recognizes how these products promote societal good and the rule of law.
Submissions were sought in three areas: Government and Law Enforcement, Law Firm, and Corporate. The prizes were given in the form of a $10,000 charitable donation on behalf of each winner to an approved Hero Award-sponsored charity.
The winner in the Law Firm category of the 2011 Hero Award was DLA Piper for its use of Westlaw PeopleMap to provide legal aid to homeless veterans at the Stand Down 2011 event. Veterans Village of San Diego, the organization responsible for Stand Down,was the selected charity.
Winning Story of DLA Piper:
DLA Piper, LLP helps veterans locate their family.
DLA Piper, LLP partners with Thomson Reuters at Stand Down in San Diego
In times of war, exhausted combat units requiring time to rest and recover were removed from the battlefields to a place of relative security and safety. Today, Stand Down refers to a community-based intervention program designed to help the nation’s estimated 200,000 homeless veterans “combat” life on the streets. “The program has become recognized as the most valuable outreach tool to help homeless veterans in the nation today,” according to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans.
For the past several years, DLA Piper, LLP has teamed with Thomson Reuters to provide free legal services to Veterans in San Diego at this three-day event. Legal professionals from DLA Piper volunteer their time while Thomson Reuters provides free access to their Public Records and PeopleMap databases to help veterans locate their family members. Located in the Communications Tent, volunteers assist veterans in finding loved ones using PeopleMap and then call them for free using phones provided on site.
For many reasons, including chronic homelessness, long-term deployments and medical conditions which resulted from combat, men and women lose contact with their loved ones. PeopleMap is the resource that links our veterans with their loved ones.
So many have benefited from the alliance between DLA Piper and Thomson Reuters, but here are some particularly touching stories of Veterans that have been helped:
- Using PeopleMap, we were able to help a homeless veteran locate his sister’s telephone number. He called her right away and left a message. Later that day, I noticed one of our long distance telephones ringing. Much like it is difficult to walk by a ringing payphone, I answered the call. It turns out it was the sister of this Veteran we helped earlier. She called our phones because she did not recognize the number and it was different from the number her brother had left. She told me she had not spoken to her brother in over 10 years, and if I saw him, I was to let him know that she definitely wanted to talk to him and that she would try to reach him on the number he left her. She asked what Stand Down was and once I let her know the details, she thanked me profusely for being there to support our veterans and for helping her brother find her.
- Thanks to Westlaw’s PeopleMap, we were able to quickly locate the contact information for a veteran who reached out to his daughter. After he talked to her for a long time, he told us that he had not spoken with her in over 16 years. He was thrilled to reconnect with her and thanked us repeatedly.
- Another memorable moment was one of our attorneys used PeopleMap to help a man locate his twin sister who he had not spoken to in almost 20 years. The attorney located the veteran’s twin sister, and he was able to call her on the phones we provided. They spoke for over an hour, and she was able to give him contact information for other family members. When he hung up the phone, this burly man, easily over 6 feet tall, had tears running down his face. He could not thank us enough for finding his lost loved ones and for giving him the means to make immediate contact with them.
Those of us in the San Diego office of DLA Piper are so grateful to utilize the power of Westlaw PeopleMap to quickly and accurately locate public record information to help our homeless veterans.
Read more 2011 winning stories and stay tuned for more details on the 2012 Everyday Hero Award program…