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Prettyman Fellowship Program Honored by Southern Center for Human Rights

October 28, 2011 —

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In recognition of contributions to the protection of human rights and the fight for equal justice, the Georgetown University Law Center E. Barrett Prettyman and Stuart Stiller Post-Graduate Fellowship Program has been honored with the 2011 Frederick Douglass Award for Human Rights by the Southern Center for Human Rights (SCHR). The award was presented in Washington on October 27.

"It is our privilege and delight to recognize the Prettyman program’s 50-year legacy of pioneering clinical legal education and teaching young lawyers to be compassionate and zealous advocates of poor people accused of crimes," said Sara Totonchi, executive director of SCHR. "The Prettyman program has made a lasting impact nationwide, improving the overall quality of defense advocacy in the criminal justice system."

Established in 1996, the Frederick Douglass Award for Human Rights is given annually and recognizes individuals and organizations for their leadership in the fight for human and constitutional rights in the criminal justice system. Previous recipients include Georgetown Law Distinguished Visitor from Practice and former Solicitor General Seth Waxman, now-Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, New York Times columnist and author of Gideon’s Trumpet Anthony Lewis and the Public Defender Service of the District of Columbia.

A pioneering clinical program when it was created in 1960, the E. Barrett Prettyman and Stuart Stiller Fellowship is a two-year legal internship that combines coursework in the Law Center’s graduate program with representation of indigent clients in the local courts of the District of Columbia. While training newly minted law graduates in both the academic and practical aspects of courtroom advocacy, it also serves members of the D.C. community who lack access to representation.

Three fellowships are awarded each year. Two of the fellowships honor E. Barrett Prettyman (L'15, H'46), the former chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and an advocate of civil reform and legal services for the poor, and the other honors advocate and lecturer Stuart Stiller (L'69).

Georgetown Law recently produced a video to commemorate the Prettyman Fellowship’s 50th anniversary. A story about the program appeared in the spring/summer 2011 issue of Georgetown Law magazine.

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