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BASF's Lawyer Referral and Information Service Celebrates 60 years of Public Service

November 1, 2006 - San Francisco - The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) announces that its oldest public service program, the Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS), is commemorating its 60th year of service to the community on November 1, 2006. In recognition and appreciation of 60 years of quality service to the community, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom issued a Mayoral Proclamation officially designating November 1, 2006, "Lawyer Referral and Information Service Day."

LRIS was established by BASF in 1946 to meet the legal needs of the city's World War II veterans. Since then, LRIS has grown significantly to become BASF's largest public service program, serving over 60,000 people in the San Francisco community annually, while also ensuring the highest standards for legal representation in the city's criminal and juvenile courts. The program's multi-lingual staff provides outreach and services to a significant portion of the non-English speaking residents of San Francisco ensuring that all San Franciscans have access to qualified, prescreened legal services. In addition to connecting San Francisco residents with experienced lawyers, LRIS has continued to expand the scope of its services, and now provides extensive services to the San Francisco Superior Courts through its Indigent Defense Administration Program and its Dependency Representation Program.

BASF President Joan Haratani, stated "The Bar Association of San Francisco is proud of its LRIS program, and we are excited that November 1st marks the 60th anniversary of a program that has done so much, for six decades, for so many in our community. LRIS enables San Franciscans to address their legal needs and is a perfect example of what the bar association is all about - providing equal access to justice for everyone in the San Francisco community."

Under the leadership of Director Carol Woods, LRIS won the American Bar Association's Cindy A. Raisch Award in 2000 for superior public service and has become a model for lawyer referral services nationwide. "We are proud of the services we have been able to provide to the San Francisco community over these years and we thank Mayor Newsom for this special recognition," Woods said.

The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) is a nonprofit voluntary membership organization of over 8,000 attorneys, law students and legal professionals in the Bay Area. Founded in 1872, BASF is one of the largest and most dynamic metropolitan bar associations in the U.S., with a long and distinguished record of community action, public service and service to the legal profession.

Questions about media relations, BASF issues currently in the news, San Francisco Attorney magazine, marketing and communications:

Ann Murphy, Director of Communications & Public Relations
(415) 782-9000 x8792

For general communications inquiries:

Sayre Happich, Assistant Director of Communications & Public Relations
(415) 782-9000 x8104