(Left to right: Back Row- Brandt Lorio, SLLS Board Member, Mark Surprenant, SLLS Board President, Beth Mizell, Louisiana State Senator, District 12, Mike Cooper, Mayor of Covington, Kathryn Mitchell, SLLS Volunteer, and Patricia Bonneau, Northshore Community Partnership Panel; Front Row- 22nd JDC Judge Dawn Amacker, Div. L, Paula Charles, SLLS Managing Attorney, Laura Tuggle, SLLS Executive Director, District 3 Judge Allison Penzato, Louisiana Court of Appeals, Div. C, Roxanne Newman, SLLS Deputy Director, and Elena Perez, SLLS Managing Attorney of Pro Bono Program.)

The Southeast Louisiana Legal Services’ (SLLS) Northshore Pro Bono Project celebrated its 10th anniversary on Friday, Feb. 22, 2019 in Covington, La. The event commemorated the untiring efforts of dedicated pro bono attorneys who have volunteered their time and skills to fight for the rights of  more than 3,506 low-income and vulnerable people on the Northshore over the last 10 years.

“The impact these bright men and women make on the community is truly remarkable,” said Roxanne Newman, SLLS Deputy Director. “It’s because of them [pro bono attorneys] that our clients can successfully move forward and rebuild their lives. Day in and day out, they’re out there fighting for a victim of domestic violence, helping a disabled veteran obtain benefits owed to them, protecting an elderly man from a wrongful eviction, and so much more.”

Guests checking in for the 10th anniversary event

In honor of these achievements, the celebration sought to inspire other attorneys and volunteers in the Northshore to stand up for equal justice. “Don’t let any body convince you that the little thing that you’re doing can’t have a big impact,” said 22nd Judicial District Attorney Warren Montgomery, one of the event’s speakers. “One ripple can cause a wave, which can lead to a big change in our community.”

The celebration included four hours of free training to help attorneys refine the skills they need to help low-income people who can’t otherwise afford an attorney. There was also a luncheon presentation to honor the accomplishments of SLLS’ pro bono attorneys and the supporters who make the Northshore Pro Bono Project possible. Special guests speakers included the Honorable Beth Mizell, Louisiana State Senator (District 12), the Honorable Mike Cooper, Mayor of the City of Covington, and six judges from the 22nd Judicial District Court (JDC).

The Honorable Beth Mizell speaking at the luncheon presentation

Over the last decade, SLLS’ Northshore Pro Bono Project has continued to expand its services to at-risk families living on the Northshore. It now coordinates six ongoing special legal clinics and partnerships. Its volunteer attorneys have donated $150,000 worth of legal services to those in need each year.

Thank you to the Legal Services Corporation, the Louisiana Bar Foundation, and to our many volunteers and supporters, including CJ’s Florist, Outback Steakhouse, Abita Roasting Company, Another Broken Egg Cafe, and Essence Linens, who helped make the celebration such a success.

(Left to Right: Mike Cooper, Mayor of Covington, and Mark Surprenant, SLLS Board President)

As SLLS looks toward the future, we are excited to continue expanding our services and fighting for justice for all on the Northshore. Check out the “Get Involved” pages on our website to learn more about how you can help make a difference in your community. If you would like to view more photos from our February event, then check out our Facebook page.

Juliana Stricklen

Juliana serves as the Volunteer Coordinator at SLLS. She believes that every hurdle in the justice system demands bold actions. She is an artistic person who is passionate about economic development and language access.

Throughout her 11-month service term at SLLS, Juliana hopes to recruit a dynamic pool of volunteers that are eager to join the fight for fairness in the justice system. Additionally, she hopes to learn more about career opportunities in the legal field. As a member of Serve Louisiana, Louisiana’s longest-running AmeriCorps program, Juliana plans to affect long-standing systemic barriers to justice through community engagement and collaboration.

Prior to SLLS, Juliana worked as a Coordinator for the New Orleans Interfaith Sanctuary Coalition in New Orleans, La., as well as the Interview Coordinator and a DJ for WTUL New Orleans. Her desire to give back to the community and help low-income families receive civil legal aid drove her to SLLS. Her efforts at SLLS have become an integral part of the office and we are thankful to have her onboard.


Keoni Bermoy

Keoni serves as the Strategic Communications Coordinator at SLLS. He believes that everyone deserves the right to receive easily-accessible legal services in the justice system. He is a driven, young professional who is passionate about mental health and wellness education, as well as protecting the rights of domestic violence victims.  

As a member of Serve Louisiana, Louisiana’s longest-running AmeriCorps program, Keoni is given the opportunity to address a variety of social issues and affect true, long-term change in the community. During his 11-month service term, Keoni hopes to give a voice to special populations (e.g. homeless, disabled, disaster victims, and the elderly) and inspire others to help those individuals meet life’s most basic needs – food, housing, shelter and safety.

Keoni is a graduate of The University of Alabama. Prior to SLLS, he worked as an Account Services intern at DVL Seigenthaler, a Finn Partners Company, in Nashville, Tenn. His passion for social justice led him to the Orleans office, and he has quickly become a vital asset to the team.



Thanks to federal funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), AmeriCorps programs like Serve Louisiana engages more than 75,000 members annually in intensive service with a community-based organization, such as Southeast Louisiana Legal Services, to deliver real impact where it’s needed most.


About Serve Louisiana

AmeriCorps is a program of the Corporation for National and Community Service, a federal agency that engages more than 5 million Americans in service through its Americorps, Senior Corps, Social Innovation Fund, and Volunteer Generation Fund programs, and leads the President’s national call to service initiative, United We Serve. Since 1994, more than 980,000 Americans have provided more than 1.2 billion hours of service to their communities, and country, through AmeriCorps. For more information about AmeriCorps, please visit NationalService.gov. For more information about Serve Louisiana, please visit ServeLouisiana.org.

Cindy is our Northshore Pro Bono Project Coordinator. See our Facebook page for information about the fabulous prizes! Our North Shore Pro Bono Coordinator Cindy Bordonaro, hosting the ceremonies below, plus appearing with event participants.

Cindy Bordonaro with Cindy Petry of Covington



SLLS Housing Attorney Hannah Adams Honored with the 2017 Louisiana State Bar Association Excellence in Advocacy Award at the Justice Community Conference. Amanda Golob accepted the award on Hannah’s behalf.

Here are photos from the August 22nd Court Improvement Day at the 22nd JDC. Cindy is our Northshore Pro Bono Project Coordinator. See our Facebook page for information about the fabulous prizes! Our North Shore Pro Bono Coordinator Cindy Bordonaro, hosting the ceremonies below, plus appearing with event participants.

Cindy Bordonaro

Cindy Bordonaro with Cindy Petry of Covington

Cindy Bordonaro with Suellen Richardson of Covington

James Knight with Cindy Bordonaro

From left: Patricia Bonneau, Judge Mary Devereux, and Cynthia M. Bordonaro

From left: Judge Mary Devereux, Judge Dawn Amacker, Cynthia M. Bordonaro, and Ernest Anderson of Slidell

Here are some photos from last night’s SLLS fundraiser at Eiffel Society. 

From left: Orleans Parish Civil District Court Judge and former SLLS attorney Bernadette D’Souza, SLLS Deputy Director Roxanne Newman, and SLLS New Orleans Family Law Unit Managing Attorney Doug Carey

From left: Orleans Parish Civil District Court Judge Bernadette D’Souza, SLLS Low-Income Tax Clinic Managing Attorney Paul Tuttle, SLLS Deputy Director Roxanne Newman

Bayou Blue: go here to read about our Houma office Managing Attorney Salyria Gumms appearance June 13 at the Bayou Blue Center birthday and luncheon celebration.