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DePaul law students, alumna receive awards for pro bono work

DePaul University College of Law’s Pro Bono & Community Service Initiative (PBCSI) recognized 84 students who collectively reported more than 15,000 service hours during academic year 2015-2016 at an awards reception on April 21.

2016 Pro Bono Alumna Award recipient Kathleen Curtin (JD '07), center, is congratulated by colleagues from the Legal Aid Society of Metropolitan Family Services.
Alumna Kathleen Curtin (JD ’07) received the 2016 Pro Bono Alumni Award for her deep commitment to pro bono work in the area of family law. Curtin, who currently runs her own law practice, is a dedicated volunteer at the Legal Aid Society of Metropolitan Family Services and Prairie State Legal Services. She also serves as president of the Association of Women Attorneys of Lake County.

Among the awardees, 30 graduating students received the Benjamin Hooks Distinguished Public Service Award for contributing 200 or more hours of service while at DePaul. The award is named for the late Benjamin L. Hooks (JD ’48), a civil rights activist and former executive director of the NAACP, the first African-American to be named to the Federal Communications Commission, and a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Recipients of the Benjamin Hooks Distinguished Public Service Award are honored at PBCSI's annual service awards reception in April.
Third-year student Alex Antonacci, a PBCSI student coordinator and Hooks Award recipient who tallied 334.5 service hours while at DePaul, reflected on her pro bono experience.

“I learned the importance of giving back,” she said. “With my law degree comes a responsibility to use it to give back to my community.” Antonacci will be working as an assistant public defender in Palm Beach County, Florida, after graduation.

Following are this year's award recipients.

Benjamin Hooks Distinguished Public Service Award Recipients
Frank Albi Lucienne Doler Ann Jackson Walter Lincoln Simone Patras Krista Sifuentez
Alexandra Antonacci Sarah Foley Caroline Kane Scott Lucas Guadalupe Perez Alyssa Silva
Molly Bruno James Garfield June Kowalewski Destinee Metoyer Alexandra Perraud Morgan Wilkinson
Katherine Davis Charlie Giger James Kozlowski Maggie Miller Jacqueline Pesenko Natalia Wontorczyk
Santiago DelReal Andrew Hays Sue Lee Marta Mizak Patrick Schweska Caitlin Zusy
President's Award for Service
Elise Blandin Kate Fritzmann Qin Lu Sonam Patel
Erica Boos Jacqueline Kliment Natasha Mangal Holly Sanchez-Perry
Corinne Cundiff Sukhpal Singh Kooner Ritta Merza Brooke Sartin
Alessandra Faso Arben Kurtovic Jaime Ochoa Cecilia Villalvazo
Chancellor's Award for Service
Class of 2016
Danielle DeLeon Spires Xiaoxue Du Caitlin Duane Deirdre McGrory
Class of 2017
Ruth Abarca Abigail Durkin Maria Gimena Puppo Martinez Fei Tan
Amanda Alasauskas Lindsey Gotkin Noora Shubbak
Kathryn Brown Gina Leahy Alexandra Siciliano
Class of 2018
Nolan Downey Lasheda House Marisa Reongpongdit Elizabeth Toth
Dean's Certificate of Service
Class of 2016
Lindsay Brown Bryce Newell
Class of 2017
Natalia Anuszkiewicz Lauren Masching
Natalie Monteil
Evan Compton Kaitlin McKenzie Rebecca Smart
Class of 2018
Belfor Arichavala Sukhmanjit Kaur
Rachel Migliore​
Maria Calderon Anne Marie Knisely​ Edward O'Neill
​Alexandra Cox Morgan Litterly Nicole O'Toole
​Kathryn Green ​Daniel Melfi Erica Tremble​