The Equal Justice Council (EJC) is composed of civic-minded leaders in the legal and business communities who lend their time, expertise, and counsel to Maryland Legal Aid in a variety of areas.
Established in 1997 by Maryland private attorneys, the EJC’s primary goal is to promote equal access to justice by increasing and diversifying Maryland Legal Aid’s resources, financial and otherwise, and serving as advocates and ambassadors on behalf of Maryland Legal Aid.
Throughout Maryland Legal Aid’s history, funding from governmental sources has never adequately met the demand for services. The EJC’s fundraising approach, therefore, focuses on securing funding from the private bar and business community. In addition to making personal contributions to Maryland Legal Aid, members of the EJC also obtain annual contributions from their respective firms and other significant entities within their communities. Members also work to increase pro bono involvement, participate in fundraising activities and educational programs, and cultivate relationships with foundations and corporations on Maryland Legal Aid’s behalf. EJC members also serve as hosts for recruitment events, including the annual Equal Justice Awards breakfast, which always features a prominent keynote speaker, and the Managing Partners’ breakfast aimed at leaders of the legal community.
The co-chairs of the EJC are Martin Himeles, Jr., Esq. (Zuckerman Spaeder LLP) and Lee Ogburn (Kramon & Graham, P.A.). Along with their EJC colleagues, the co-chairs develop and implement the overall volunteer fundraising effort, including the recruitment of EJC members statewide, and forge relationships with both government and private funding entities. The co-chairs of the Law Firm Campaign are Jessica duHoffmann, Esq. (Miles & Stockbridge, P.C.); Andrew Freeman (Brown, Goldstein & Levy LLP); and Paul Nussbaum (Whiteford Taylor & Preston). These leaders oversee the EJC’s annual giving campaign.