For the past few years, Jane Mores has been an active volunteer with ALSC, mainly as a pro bono attorney for our monthly Family Law Clinic in Southeast Alaska, a partnership with AWARE, a local domestic violence shelter. Jane has always been well-prepared and reliable, offering specialized assistance and advice to clients every month.
Thank you, Jane, for all of your hard work and dedication to our clients!
Why did you choose to volunteer with ALSC?
I chose to volunteer with ALSC for several reasons. It may sound cheesy, but I like people and I like helping people. The demand and critical need for low income legal services will always exceed the supply of attorneys available to provide such services and I feel it my professional responsibility to help however I can—even if it is in such a small way. Of course, there’s also immense self-satisfaction and mutual benefit in volunteer service. It feels right and it feels good to help folks in need navigate our complex legal system.
What are some of your experiences at ALSC that have made a positive difference in the lives of others and/or the community?
I strive to make a positive difference in the lives of each client by giving them helpful, relevant information and candid advice that will encourage, equip and empower them in their particular legal quagmire. Given the nature of the family law clinics and/or MLK Day of Service, it is hard to know whether or how often my goal is achieved. Perhaps it’s the gratitude and appreciation expressed by clients at the end of each visit that gives me the glimmer of hope that my service has helped.
How do you think your experiences with ALSC will benefit you in the future?
The courage and value I’ve gained from ALSC volunteer work will benefit me long into the future. Like many would-be attorney volunteers, a sense of inadequate subject matter expertise had long prevented me from volunteering. I knew, for instance, the majority of need was in the area of family law—but I didn’t practice family law. When I decided to bite the bullet and put that excuse aside, the ALSC staff here in Juneau, namely Supervising Attorney Heather Parker, came through like rock stars. They provided me the tools, resources and steady support I needed to sufficiently overcome the subject matter expertise dilemma. As lawyers, it’s in our DNA—and a good thing—to have as much expertise as possible in our areas of practice. And no, I still don’t consider myself a family law lawyer or a family law expert. But from now on, and whenever I can, I hope to have the courage to say, ‘yes’ to lending ALSC a hand, even when I’m not feeling particularly courageous.
What do you do when you are not volunteering with ALSC?
When I’m not volunteering with ALSC or on the job, you might find me on a softball field, a golf course, a downhill ski run, at a book club meeting, engaged in Rotary activities or taking my Words with Friends turn. Beaches, travel and social time with friends and family are also high on the list of my favorite activities.