For this month’s Alumni Spotlight, we sat down for a conversation with Patricia Bronte, a former LCBH Board Member, Legal Director, and Acting Executive Director.
As part of LCBH’s 40th anniversary, we’re reaching out to our alumni, those individuals who have supported LCBH’s growth by serving as an intern, board member, or employee. Patricia Bronte is a special person who has worn all three hats in service to LCBH!
Patricia joined LCBH as an intern after her first year at Northwestern’s School of Law in 1985. Patricia said, "LCBH’s mission resonated with me and has remained in my heart ever since."
After her graduation from Northwestern, Patricia remained actively involved with LCBH. She served as a member of the Board of Directors from 1989 to 1999 and occupied the role of Board President from 1995 to 1998. In 1996, she was heavily involved with the editing of Time to Move, LCBH’s first significant report on Chicago’s eviction court.
In 2000, Patricia transitioned to the role of Legal Director and acting Executive Director, where she expanded the Attorney of the Day program, which provided legal representation for tenants with limited resources and advocated for systemic reforms. This expansion included paralegal volunteers, which increased the number of cases accepted.
In 2001, Patricia recruited Kathleen K. Clark to serve as Executive Director, allowing her to leave LCBH and travel to Azerbaijan, to work on an ABA project promoting the rule of law. She later returned to serve on the Board of Directors in early 2002.
In 2005, she took her passion for justice and civil legal aid in a different direction. She left LCBH to represent inmates at Guantanamo Bay as Pro Bono lead counsel in habeas corpus proceedings.
In October 2019, LCBH’s founders, David Orr and Jack Kaplan, held a small gathering with some of the organization’s early board members. Patricia attended and volunteered to help with planning LCBH’s 40th anniversary.
When asked why she decided to come back as a volunteer, she stated, "LCBH has always been a place where I was happy to put pro bono hours in and witness the organization’s impact on the community…I have always been amazed by its ability to have a huge impact on people’s lives with its limited amount of resources."
LCBH is grateful to have Patricia’s voice and advocacy. If you have volunteered or are a former Board member, we encourage you to Share Your Story.