On Tuesday, June 19, 2012, Bread for the City Legal Director Vytas V. Vergeer was elected to the DC Bar’s 20 member Board of Governors to serve for a three year term. The Board of Governors serves the DC Bar to ensure that the ethical standards and rules of professional conduct are upheld in the legal community.
Vergeer has held several positions with the DC Bar, first serving on their steering committee, and most recently, as chair of the Real Estate Housing and Land Use committee. He was endorsed to serve on the Board of Governors by the DC Consortium of Legal Services Providers, the Washington Council of Lawyers, and GAYLAW.
“I hope to be able to help the bar become the most effective agency for its attorneys,” shared Vytas after winning the election.
Vergeer joined Bread for the City as a staff attorney in 1994 and became legal director in 1999. Under his tenure, the legal clinic has grown to 14 full-time staff attorneys who opened 720 cases for full representation in matters of housing, family, and disability law last fiscal year. Most notably in recent years, Vergeer and his staff worked collaboratively with the Legal Aid Society of DC to launch two new projects with the DC Superior Court (paid for by public funds awarded by the DC Bar Foundation): the Court-Based Legal Services Project and the Child Support Court-Based Legal Services Project, which provide same-day representation in matters of housing and family law, respectively.
Vytas Vergeer was awarded the Jerrold Scoutt Prize in 2010 by the DC Bar Foundation for his efforts to reform pro bono tenant representation in the Superior Court Landlord and Tenant Branch. The Jerrold Scoutt Prize is awarded annually to an attorney who has worked for a significant portion of his or her career at a non-profit organization providing direct hands-on legal services to the needy in the District of Columbia; has demonstrated compassionate concern for his or her clients; and has exhibited a high degree of skill on their behalf. You can read Vergeer’s acceptance speech here (it’s quite funny!).