Fenwick Drives Greater Community Impact with New Corporate Social Responsibility Program

Mountain View, California (June 10, 2016)– Fenwick & West today announced its integrated, firmwide corporate social responsibility (CSR) program, along with the first of its CSR projects, Fenwick Gives Back, set to begin next week. The program integrates key CSR components such as the firm’s nationally-recognized and award-winning pro bono work, charitable contributions and volunteerism, with the goal of increasing and focusing employee engagement, and ultimately, making a larger impact within the communities where Fenwick employees live and work.

Fenwick is one of the first West Coast-based law firms to establish a CSR program. Through integrating these components, Fenwick seeks to deepen understanding of the communities the firm serves and to focus efforts and resources around holistic programs and strategies.

Fenwick Corporate Social Responsibility Team

Heading up the larger CSR program is Hilarie Atkisson, Fenwick’s new Director of Corporate Social Responsibility and Pro Bono Counsel. Ms. Atkisson will be helping to identify community volunteer and charitable giving opportunities that provide the greatest possible benefit to the broader community and the most rewarding experiences for those donating their time. In addition, she will be working directly with Julie Park, Fenwick’s Director of Pro Bono, and Patrick Premo, Litigation Partner and Chair of Fenwick’s Pro Bono Program, to provide lawyers and staff members at Fenwick with new meaningful opportunities for volunteer legal and community service.

Ms. Atkisson benefits from insights gained through more than 17 years working in pro bono legal services and involvement with public interest and community service organizations. “Hilarie is well known for her pro bono work and for innovating how law firms address community engagement,” Fenwick Managing Partner Kate Fritz said. “We’re thrilled to have Hilarie here at Fenwick and to further invest in pro bono and community service programs, which have long been priorities at the firm. We view service, not only to our clients but also to our broader community, as a core part of the practice of law.”

Fenwick’s Director of Pro Bono Julie Park commented, “We’re extremely proud of the pro bono program that we’ve built at Fenwick, now one of Silicon Valley's top programs for attorney involvement and time donated. Our attorneys have made a huge difference in countless lives, particularly over the past decade as we have extended our pro bono services. With Hilarie on board, we're looking to grow our efforts and involvement even more with partners, clients and employees.”

“By integrating pro bono with charitable giving and volunteer work, we can find new ways to collaborate – across organizations and across the firm– which will increase our community impact,” Patrick Premo added.

“Fenwick has always been at the forefront of the legal industry for innovation, and our new CSR program is a great example of that leadership,” Ms. Atkisson said. “Fenwick is a tremendous place for pro bono legal services, and we have a great opportunity to incorporate elements of pro bono into a cohesive CSR program. I’m looking forward to focusing our efforts with employees, clients and other companies’ CSR programs and to maximizing our impact in the communities where we work and live.”

Prior to joining Fenwick, Ms. Atkisson spent many years directing the firmwide administration of pro bono programs at two top tier international law firms. She received her J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and undergraduate degree from Mills College.

Fenwick Gives Back Week

As one of its first projects, Fenwick’s CSR Program will host a coordinated annual pro bono, volunteerism and community service week, named Fenwick Gives Back Week: Raising Awareness and Inspiring Action. Fenwick Gives Back Week starts June 13, 2016.

The firm invites its attorneys, non-legal staff employees and clients to participate in this year’s Fenwick Gives Back Week. The week will provide a number of pro bono and community service opportunities, including:

  • Film screening of “Sin País” – a short documentary that explores one family's complex and emotional journey involving deportation. The family featured in the movie will attend the screening, as will filmmaker Theo Rigby,
  • Pro bono asylum training,
  • The first Silicon Valley workshop aimed at better understanding the real world challenges and tough choices imposed by poverty and
  • Various community volunteer events.

Fenwick is also planning numerous CSR activities including summer events geared towards its summer associates, key clients, as well as the upcoming presidential election this fall, including an election protection call center to ensure voters in a variety of states have the information and support they need to vote.

For more information about Fenwick’s CSR program, including its pro bono services, please visit fenwick.com.

About Fenwick & West
Fenwick & West LLP provides comprehensive legal services to ground-breaking technology and life sciences companies – at every stage of their lifecycle – and the investors that partner with them. We craft innovative, cost-effective and practical solutions on issues ranging from venture capital, public offerings, joint ventures, M&A and strategic relationships, to intellectual property, litigation and dispute resolution, taxation, antitrust, and employment and labor law. For more than four decades, Fenwick has helped some of the world's most recognized companies become and remain market leaders. For more information, please visit fenwick.com​.