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Going Once, Going Twice

29th Annual PILF Auction draws hundreds in support of student summer stipends.

Photographs by Hanna Lipman ’19 and Ryan Duffy

The 29th Annual Public Interest Law Foundation Auction drew more than 330 people to the offices of Morgan Lewis in Boston on March 23, where two alumni were honored for their public service, bidders won trips, dinners, and sports outings, and thousands of dollars were raised to support student stipends.

The auction is one of the Law School’s most popular events and the culmination of a year’s worth of planning by PILF students. “It brings together alumni, faculty, students, and members of the community,” said Michelle Grossfield, public interest and pro bono program director, “to celebrate our graduates’ impact in advancing social and economic justice while raising critical funding that ensures BC Law students can continue to pursue this important work.”

At this year’s PILF Auction, the top sellers among the 160 items for sale were a Barbri Course ($1,997), two tickets to the rematch of Super Bowl LI ($533), a Sports Illustrated autographed by Patriots quarterback Tom Brady ($500), and a round of golf with Professor R. Michael Cassidy ($525).

The alumni honorees were BC Law Professor Francine Sherman ’80, founder and director of the Juvenile Rights Advocacy Project, and Jonathan M. Albano ’82, who worked tirelessly with the Boston Globe in its investigation into clergy sex abuse.

PILF chose to recognize Sherman for her tireless advocacy on behalf of juveniles and for inspiring so many students at BC Law to pursue a career in juvenile justice. She was selected in honor of the 50th anniversary of In re Gault, the landmark United States Supreme Judicial Court case that provided juveniles involved in the criminal justice system with due process rights, including the right to an attorney. Sherman is the author of Gender Injustice: System-Level Juvenile Justice Reforms for Girls, a comprehensive overview of the needs and pathways of girls into and through the justice system that details a developmental approach to juvenile justice reforms. She is also the author of Detention Reform and Girls, a volume of the Pathways to Detention Reform series published by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, where she is also a consultant.

Albano, now a partner at Morgan Lewis who was a litigator in First Amendment and libel cases for the Boston Globe in the 2000s, was a pivotal figure in the newspaper’s effort to expose abuse in the Catholic Church, filing motions and lawsuits against the Boston Archdiocese. He was part of the Globe team whose work was the basis for a Pulitzer Prize-winning series and the Academy Award-winning movie Spotlight. Albano was played by actor David Fraser in the film.

Donations to PILF may be made online here by selecting to make your gift to “Other” and entering “PILF/Public Interest Law Foundation.”