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Two Recognized With Pro Bono/ Public Interest Award from ONU's College of Law

Apr 25, 2007
Donald A. Wietmarschen, of Zanesville, Ohio, has been selected by the faculty of the Ohio Northern University College of Law as the alumni recipient of its 2007 Pro Bono/Public Interest Award. Jeffrey S. Snell, a third-year law student from Columbus, Ohio, is the student recipient. The awards will be presented at the college's annual Honors Banquet on April 18, 2007.

Wietmarschen, a 1981 graduate of Ohio Northern University College of Law, is a partner with Gottlieb, Johnston, Beam & Dal Ponte, P.L.L., in Zanesville, Ohio. David P. Mitzel, Ph.D., executive director of the Muskingum County Community Foundation, nominated Wietmarschen for the award, noting the foundation "is able to be a leader in innovations in the field thanks to Don's astute counsel. He has given us the confidence to go where other foundations fear to tread."

Mitzel also credited Wietmarschen with creating the legal documents necessary for the foundation to be recognized as meeting the national standards set by the Council on Foundations. He described Wietmarschen as "an attorney who knows everything or can find out everything you need to know and chooses not to bill you."

Snell was nominated by classmate Jeffrey B. Garber for his commitment to public service throughout his law school career as evidenced by his work with the West Virginia Public Defender Corporation and providing tax assistance to low-income citizens through the Voluntary Income Tax Assistance program. He also served as president of the American Constitution Society which educates students and the public on issues such as voting rights.

In nominating Snell, Garber notes, "Jeff is the perfect example of an excellent young legal mind devoted to public service that is necessary for the efficient functioning of an equal justice system."

Ohio Northern grants an annual Pro Bono/Public Interest Award for alumni/ae, students or members of the faculty in an effort to expand and encourage its commitment to providing pro bono and public interest service to members of our communities. To be eligible, the person to be recognized must engage in volunteer public interest or pro bono services. Public interest litigation includes advocacy or litigation, or both.

This is the seventh year for the award. Past winners include William Huber, Esq. '68 Law; Professor Victor Streib; Ms. Beth Breier '02 Law, the coordinator of the Innocence Project; C. Andrew Haag, Esq. '80 Law; Professor Joanne Brant; Gerald F. Siesel, Esq. '76 Law; Jennifer Ann Corry, Esq.'83 Law; Professor Bruce C. French; Melissa S. Cook LaRocco '05 Law; Matthew B. Herdzik, Jr., Esq. '79 Law.