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State Bar of Georgia Honors Bramlett, Elmore for Leadership in Establishment of Military Legal Assistance Program
Atlanta – Jeffrey O. Bramlett and M. Jerome Elmore, both of Bondurant Mixson & Elmore LLP in Atlanta, were recognized by the State Bar of Georgia for their leadership in establishing the Bar’s Military Legal Assistance Program, which over the past 14 months has provided legal assistance to more than 300 military service members and veterans on a pro bono or reduced-fee basis. Special resolutions were presented to each attorney during the Bar’s midyear meeting Jan. 15 in Nashville, Tenn.
Elmore was instrumental in starting the program as a result of his fact-finding mission to the Middle East in 2007, which identified the need for such an initiative. He has served on the program’s governing committee since its inception.
Bramlett, while serving as State Bar president in 2008-09, organized a team of Georgia lawyers, including military staff judge advocates, to formulate a plan that would offer civilian legal assistance to service members and veterans. Currently, more than 105,000 men and women from Georgia are on active military duty or serve in the National Guard or Reserves, and more than 765,000 veterans reside in the state.
As part of the military legal assistance initiative, the Bar’s Continuing Legal Education program has provided training to more than 200 lawyers seeking accreditation to practice before the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
“The legal problems of service members often have unique military requirements and implications,” said Charles L. Ruffin, chair of the Bar’s Military Legal Assistance Program Committee. “Also, there are special federal laws that protect service members and veterans. This program was developed to help ensure that the rights of service members and veterans are protected.”
In its resolutions, the Bar commended Bramlett and Elmore for their vision, dedication, perseverance and leadership in establishing the Military Legal Assistance Program and putting in place a means of providing quality civilian legal support to service members and veterans as a complement to the service provided by staff judge advocates and military legal assistance officers throughout Georgia.
The State Bar of Georgia, with offices in Atlanta, Savannah and Tifton, was established in 1964 by Georgia’s Supreme Court as the successor to the voluntary Georgia Bar Association, founded in 1884. All lawyers licensed to practice in Georgia belong to the State Bar. Its more than 42,000 members work together to strengthen the constitutional promise of justice for all, promote principles of duty and public service among Georgia’s lawyers, and administer a strict code of legal ethics.