New Jersey State Bar Association - The voluntary Bar Association of New Jersey, serving members since 1899.

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Merck Receives Special Recognition Pro Bono Award From NJSBA

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—The Annual Meeting of the New Jersey State Bar Association signifies the start of a new year for the NJSBA and provides a showcase for the work and efforts of attorney volunteers who are making a difference in the lives of countless New Jersey citizens.

At the Annual Meeting 2004 Opening Business Session on May 20, the NJSBA presented a Special Recognition Pro Bono Award to the Legal Department of Merck Co., Inc. for its ten-year commitment to Legal Services.

The Legal Department of Merck & Company was recognized with a special recognition award from the NJSBA in honor of the 10th anniversary of its partnership with Legal Services of New Jersey to provide pro bono services to New Jersey’s low-income families.

Merck staff attorneys handle a myriad of legal services matters, including landlord/tenant, guardianship, family law, bankruptcy and domestic violence matters.

Merck’s Rahway-based attorneys have handled nearly 150 pro bono cases, while Merck’s attorneys located in Whitehouse Station have contributed in excess of 2,000 pro bono hours assisting the poor, according to Kristi L. Vaiden, president-elect of the New Jersey Corporate Counsel Association. Beginning in 1996, Merck attorneys based in Upper Gwynedd assumed a leadership role in providing intake support to a walk-in clinic advising pro bono clients in legal matters.

In her letter recommending the Merck Legal Department for the award, Vaiden wrote that Merck facilities in Rahway and Whitehouse Station, New Jersey and Upper Gwynedd, Pennsylvania are providing pro bono legal services through alliances with Legal Services of New Jersey, Central Jersey Legal Services, Legal Services of Northwest Jersey, Volunteer Lawyers for Justice, Montgomery County Legal Aid Services and the Pro Bono Partnership.

The New Jersey State Bar Association, incorporated in 1899, is dedicated to the continuing education of lawyers and the public, to reforming and improving the legal system and to aiding in the administration of justice.