2016 Chay Sengkhounmany elected as Fellow
American Bar Foundation
The Fellows is an honorary organization of attorneys, judges, law faculty, and legal scholars whose public and private careers have demonstrated outstanding dedication to the welfare of their communities and to the highest principles of the legal profession. Membership in The Fellows is limited to one percent of lawyers licensed to practice in each jurisdiction. Members are nominated by their peers and elected by the Board of the American Bar Foundation.
Established in 1955, The Fellows support the research of the American Bar Foundation through their annual contributions and sponsor seminars and events of direct relevance to the legal profession.
Learn more at americanbarfoundation.org/fellows.
2014 First Quarter Pro Bono Hero for the Southeast Region
American Immigration Lawyers Association
In the first quarter of 2014, the American Immigration Lawyers Association sought to recognize an individual who promoted pro bono legal assistance. They were looking for people who supported and promoted pro bono work as a professional value, and who channeled that value into finding, training, and supporting private attorneys who handle pro bono cases, thereby providing access to justice to lesser-served and vulnerable members of the immigrant population. After considering all of the nominees, the following AILA Pro Bono Heroes were recognized:
Southeast (Carolinas, Florida, Georgia-Alabama, Mid-South, D.C. and Puerto Rico):
Chay Sengkhounmany was at that time Staff Attorney at the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee & The Cumberlands, and AILA was pleased to honor her as Pro Bono Hero from the Southeast Region. Beginning in 2005 she was instrumental in launching the Tennessee Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence's (Coalition) immigrant legal clinic that is still serving clients today. Chay was one of the first attorneys hired and was instrumental in developing the Coalition's pro bono clinic. She is a regular presenter on immigration relief for immigrant victims of violence. When she left the Coalition, she took her passion to serve others to Nashville's Legal Aid Society, where she continued to orchestrate U-Visa training to encourage attorneys from other fields to accept pro bono U-Visa cases. She volunteers for citizenship day, directs the Medical-Legal Partnership where she works a clinic giving free legal advice to indigent people from all walks of life and organizes trainings and speaking opportunities to educate Nashville about the immigrant community and its issues. Chay's efforts continue to unite the state of Tennessee through her trainings, advocacy, technical assistance, partnerships and her continued commitment to educating service providers about their role in making a difference. Through her work she has strengthened Nashville's commitment to serve others more holistically.