Josh Bendor is the Florence Project’s 2018 Pro Bono Attorney of the Year. Each day this week, we will feature one of the pro bono professionals who will be honored at our Annual Pro Bono Appreciate Event on October 25, 2018.
Josh Bendor, Osborn Maledon
Since he took his first pro bono case, Josh Bendor has been a dedicated advocate for detained immigrants in Arizona. Josh first became involved with the Florence Project when Larry Sandigo, our Pro Bono Manager, gave a presentation at his firm, Osborn Maledon, about the Florence Project’s pro bono work. Josh signed up to represent an unaccompanied minor. It was his first case in immigration court. “Larry and Gabi Corrales really held my hand as I learned the ropes,” Josh said.
Josh has cared about immigration law for a long time and volunteering with the Florence Project has allowed him to take meaningful action. “I think one of the best things a lawyer can do is help someone stay in this country. By working with the Florence Project, I had the opportunity to do that for a wonderful young man. It’s one of the things I’ve felt most proud to do as a lawyer.”
“That first meeting with my client will stay with me for a long time. His life in his home country and his journey here were extremely difficult. Some details were easy for him to share, and some were hard. It took several conversations to build a relationship of trust, but when we did, I was able to understand his story and help him tell it,” Josh says.
Working with the Florence Project has been a positive experience for Josh for professional and personal reasons. “I really appreciate the support that the Florence Project pro bono team gives to pro bono attorneys.”
“I think that the public really needs to know how hard the system is to navigate for anyone, but especially for people from another country who may not be familiar with our court systems or speak English. It makes an enormous difference for immigrants to have an attorney.”