For Immediate Release - March 08, 2010

Attorney General Martha Coakley Announces Over 82,000 Pounds of Food Collected in First Week of Food Drive Competition

BOSTON - Attorney General Martha Coakley is pleased to announce that in the first week of the Legal Food Frenzy, participating law firms and law schools have already collected over 82,000 pounds of food (for competition sake, $1 is equivalent to four pounds of food). The 1 st Annual "Legal Food Frenzy" is a benevolent competition within the legal community to raise food and money for The Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB). The Legal Food Frenzy was organized by the Attorney General's Office in partnership with numerous local bar associations. Law firms and law schools are competing in a two week campaign to see who can collect the most food for the GBFB, with a goal of collecting 500,000 pounds of food.

"The legal community has put its competitive skill to charitable use in this campaign to help The Greater Boston Food Bank fight hunger in the Commonwealth and has thus far raised an impressive 82,000 pounds of food," said Attorney General Coakley. "With the increase in demand for food assistance for many households in our state, this contribution will help GBFB to meet that demand. I am confident that over the next week, the law firms and law schools can rally and reach our goal of collecting a half a million pounds of food."

"The 82,000 pounds of food raised so far can provide nearly 63,100 meals to people in need. This food also comes in at a time of year when donations tend to drop off, so we appreciate the efforts made by the participants in the Legal Food Frenzy," said Catherine D'Amato, president and CEO of the The Greater Boston Food Bank.

The organization that is currently in the lead has collected 268.57 pounds of food per employee in the organization, while the organization currently in second place has collected 163.6 pounds of food per employee. The law firms and law schools are encouraging participation and competition and have shared some of their creative collection strategies:

  • One firm partner will wear a 'Hannah Montana' wig and charge admission to his concert to raise money.
  • One firm has brought in pictures drawn by employees' children reminding people of the contest and will be displayed around their office.
  • Several firms will allow staff to wear jeans to work in exchange for a donation of food or funds.
  • At two law schools, students who bring a food item can receive immunity from being called on in class.
  • At another firm, they have asked employees to contribute what they would normally spend on lunch.
  • A firm has given out reusable shopping bags with the firm's logo. Employees are encouraged to take the bag home, fill it up, bring it back, and then once they've made their donation they get to keep the bag.

The Attorney General's Office has recruited over 40 law firms and law schools to participate in this event, and the participants are collecting food items and donations during the campaign period, March 1 to March 12, 2010-a traditionally slow time for food donations. The law firm or law school that raises the most food and/or money per capita will be awarded a celebratory trophy, the Legal Food Frenzy Cup, in recognition of the firm's commitment to fighting hunger.

All food and funds collected will go to the GBFB to benefit hungry families across the eastern part of the state. Many bar associations from across the Commonwealth have partnered with the Attorney General's Office to sponsor the Legal Food Frenzy including the: Asian American Lawyers Association of MA, Boston Bar Association, Mass. Association of Hispanic Attorneys, Mass. Black Lawyers Association, Mass. Black Women Attorneys, Mass. Lesbian and Gay Bar Association and Women's Bar Association. For more information, please visit the Attorney General's Legal Food Frenzy site.

A recent Hunger Study released by the GBFB found that an estimated 571,600 low-income people are served annually by Massachusetts food banks, which marks a 23% increase since the 2006. 571,600 is roughly 9% of the state's population. Food banks in Massachusetts serve 101,400 weekly. For more details on the Hunger Study, visit the GBFB's website.

Founded in 1981, the GBFB is the largest hunger-relief organization in New England and distributes over 31 million pounds of food per year to more than 600 hunger relief agencies throughout eastern Massachusetts.

The following law firms and law schools are participating in the Legal Food Frenzy:

Law Firms

Berman, Devalerio, Pease, Tabacco, Burt & Pucillo

Beveridge & Diamond PC

Bingham McCutchen LLP

Bowditch and Dewey, LLP

Choate Hall & Stewart LLP

Cooley Godward Kronish LLP

Corwin & Corwin, LLP

Crowley and Cummings, LLC

Deutsch William Brooks DeRensis & Holland, PC

Foley & Lardner LLP

Foley Hoag LLP

Gesmer Updegrove LLP

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Keegan Werlin LLP

Laredo & Smith, LLP

Lawson & Weitzen, LLP

Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly

McDermott Will & Emery

Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C.

Moriarty & Associates, PC

National Labor Relations Board

Nutter McClennen & Fish LLP

O'Connor, Carnathan, and Mack, LLC

Ogletree Deakins

Pabian & Russell, LLC

Petrucelly, Nadler & Norris, PC

Pierce, Davis & Perritano, LLP

Posternak Blankstein & Lund LLP

Proskauer

Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi, LLP

Robinson & Cole, LLP

Ropes & Gray LLP

Rubin and Rudman LLP

Seyfarth Shaw, LLP

Sugarman, Rogers, Barshak & Cohen, PC

The McCormack Firm, LLC

Todd & Weld LLP

Volunteer Lawyers Project

WilmerHale

Law Schools

Boston University School of Law

Harvard Law School

New England School of Law

Northeastern University School of Law

Suffolk University Law School

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