Business attorney Peter D. McDermott is devoting his time to the
Massachusetts Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service Committee
because he sees it as an important volunteer opportunity for
helping the public find reliable legal help.
McDermott, who has more than 30 years of experience, including
20 years at Banner & Witcoff LTD in Boston, currently serves as
the chair of the LRS Committee, one of the ways he volunteers his
time. Last year, he committed to 12 pro bono cases. From 2007 to
2008, he co-chaired the MBA Business Law Section. And every year,
he helps organize the Business Law Annual In-House Counsel
Supporting the LRS is an important effort, he says, because it
takes some of the uncertainty out of finding a qualified and
"If you need legal services, your first thought might be to walk
into a lawyer's office and see if they can help you. Attorneys who
are members of the LRS indicate where they focus their practice,"
he said. "By having a well-trained staff, we ensure that the client
is impartially directed, quickly and efficiently, to a lawyer who
can best assist them."
Elizabeth O'Neil, director of the MBA's Public and Community
Services Department, praises his work on the committee and
commitment to the program.
"With attorney McDermott's involvement as chair for the last two
years, LRS has made strides in moving into the 21st century with
marketing, the Internet and social networking," she said.
"He has a great understanding of business, which has helped us
move forward in that direction."
LRS is a good opportunity for attorneys in more ways than one,
"The program wears two hats. It provides referrals to attorneys
on the LRS panel and gives them the chance to expand their client
base. It is also a great public service for those in the state of
Massachusetts who need legal help," she said.
McDermott has applied his business skills and given his time to
the LRS because he believes in the reliability of the program: "It
is a not-for-profit service that can do what others cannot. We
ensure the highest standards of ethics and assign clients to the
correct type of lawyers."
As chair of the LRS Committee, McDermott says he has the
opportunity to work with "outstanding" lawyers while giving back to
the community in a fun and interesting setting.
"LRS committee members are accomplished attorneys who have been
delightful and enlightening," he said. "It is easier for me to
commit to a program of true professionals who work hard to make the
service accessible to as many people as possible."