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Pro Bono Program at Texas Law Named for Benefactors Richard and Ginni Mithoff

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The Pro Bono Program at UT’s School of Law has made a name for itself  by providing an invaluable public service. Now the program has a new name, and it’s fitting that it recognizes the generosity of two individuals who have supported the program since its creation.

The naming of the Richard and Ginni Mithoff Pro Bono Program acknowledges the donors who first supported it with an initial $1 million gift at its founding five years ago, and who recently made another $1 million donation to increase the program’s endowment.

Richard and Virginia “Ginni” Mithoff

Richard and Virginia “Ginni” Mithoff

“I’m delighted the Pro Bono Program is being named for Richard and Ginni Mithoff,” said University of Texas at Austin President Bill Powers, who is a former dean of the School of Law. “Increasing access to justice by serving those in need is an important value we need to instill in every UT law student. Through the Mithoffs’ generosity, we can now do that even better.”

Since 2009, the Pro Bono Program has grown to include full-time staffers and student scholars. It engages an increasing number of students, faculty members, and alumni each year in pro bono work and offers service projects and legal clinics that help hundreds of people across the state. Through the program, law students are able to increase access to justice and build their professional skills by assisting individuals and communities in need.

The expanded endowment for the program will allow it to serve more low-income clients, involve more students, and instill in law graduates a commitment to pro bono work that will continue throughout their careers. The program is a project of the school’s William Wayne Justice Center for Public Interest Law. As a former law clerk for U.S. District Judge William Wayne Justice, Richard Mithoff was also an early supporter of the Justice Center.

Mithoff earned his JD from the school. “The Pro Bono Program at the Texas School of Law is one of the finest pro bono programs in the country,” he said. “Ginni and I are honored to be a part of this program, which not only provides outstanding training to our law students and future lawyers, but also very valuable legal assistance to those most in need. We are very proud of the overwhelming participation by students and faculty.”

UT School of Law

UT Law alumni have forged careers throughout Texas, the nation, and the world. Students in the Pro Bono Program are able to increase access to justice and build their professional skills by assisting individuals and communities in need.

Before attending law school, Richard Mithoff received his bachelor of business administration from UT Austin. In 1974 he went into practice with legendary trial attorney and 1952 School of Law alumnus Joe Jamail. In 2005 he established the Mithoff Law Firm, which is focused on general civil litigation.

He currently serves on the University of Texas Law School Foundation and has endowed a series of scholarships at his alma mater, including a Presidential Scholarship in law for educationally, socially, and culturally disadvantaged students.

Virginia “Ginni” Mithoff received her BS in elementary education from UT Austin and serves on its University Development Board and the University of Texas Health Science Center Development Board.

“Richard Mithoff is one of the greatest lawyers in America, and he and his wife, Ginni, are two of the state’s most dedicated and generous philanthropists,” said Ward Farnsworth, dean of the School of Law. “We are deeply fortunate to have their support of our Pro Bono Program; the endowment they are creating to support its work will make an important difference in the lives of thousands of people for many years to come. Having the Mithoff name on the program does honor to their commitments and will be a constant source of pride and inspiration for everyone here at the Law School.”

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