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Bar Association of San Francisco Member Benefits: Publications

Volunteer Legal Services Program’s New Management Takes Shape

 

In conjunction with the merger of the BASF Foundation into VLSP, VLSP has developed a new leadership structure that will ensure the organiza-tion moves forward strongly.

Teresa Friend, director/managing attorney of VLSP’s Homeless Advocacy Project, and Mairi McKeever, director/managing attorney of VLSP’s projects based in the downtown office, now report directly to Dan Burkhardt, executive director of BASF and VLSP. As directors, Friend and McKeever are working closely with Burkhardt, board members, other nonprofit leaders, and the courts, as well as with funders, to ensure that VLSP projects are responsive to the emerging needs of San Francisco’s low-income communities and to provide attorneys with diverse and interesting pro bono opportunities.

VLSP StaffFriend and McKeever are no strangers to VLSP. Friend has managed VLSP’s Homeless Advocacy Project (HAP) for 18 years. A Boalt Hall graduate, she was in private practice for nine years before joining VLSP. McKeever, a Hastings graduate, joined VLSP in 2003, after having worked for seven years at another San Francisco nonprofit. Burkhardt, also a Boalt graduate, joined BASF in 2003 and has been the executive director and general counsel of BASF and the BASF Foundation since 2007 and was named executive director of VLSP in June 2011.

Rounding out the VLSP management team are Katie Danielson and Andrea Fitanides, who report to Friend and McKeever, respectively. Danielson, a graduate of New College Law School and the senior supervising attorney at HAP, joined VLSP in 2002. She will take on responsibilities with volunteer and donor relationships, in addition to her continued work with HAP clients and supervising HAP projects.
Fitanides, a Boalt Hall graduate, has been working with VLSP as a supervising attorney since 2008, after a stint at a large law firm. She will take on an increased role with law firm and donor relationships and be the point person for all volunteers as VLSP’s pro bono manager.

Burkhardt, Friend, McKeever, Danielson, and Fitanides will also work to develop and maintain relationships with funders, the legal community, and other stakeholders, ensuring that VLSP remains on the cutting edge of the provision of legal services.

VLSP’s projects provide legal assistance to nearly 8,000 low-income and homeless individuals each year with the help of volunteers. With its new management team in place, those projects will remain intact and VLSP is well-positioned to provide much-needed services to our community. “Mairi, Teresa, Katie, and Andrea bring great experience and talent to our team. We are very fortunate to have them at VLSP, and I am delighted that I have the privilege of working with them. Due in no small measure to their energy and commitment, VLSP can look forward to a bright future,” said Burkhardt.

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