LAW DAY / LIBERTY BELL AWARD RECIPIENTS / LIBERTY BELL AWARD CRITERIA


HEIDI MARKOW RECEIVES LIBERTY BELL AWARD 
AS PART OF LAW DAY 2011 EVENT

ALLENTOWN – April 27, 2011 – The Bar Association of Lehigh County honored local activist Heidi Markow for her role in helping victims of domestic abuse through her nonprofit organization, The Beginning Over Foundation












“Given the history of the Beginning Over Foundation, its public action, and Heidi’s quest to assist in legal representation of the victims, these actions truly represent the spirit of the Liberty Bell Award,” said Dan LaBert, Executive Director of BALC. “The Bar Association is also proud to make a $1,000 donation to the Foundation's legal assistance fund.”

Each May, the Bar Association observes Law Day to highlight the place of law in American society and the many important roles played in the legal arena by area lawyers, judges, paralegals, court officials, county officers and others who shoulder the task of making the legal system work on a daily basis.

"As a full service empowerment center, having the support of the Bar Association of Lehigh County and the community is extremely important for the Beginning Over Foundation to now be able to financially assist survivors of domestic violence with their legal representation needs,” said Heidi Markow, Founder of the Beginning Over Foundation. 

“Through my experience, I have learned of victims being coerced into making legal decisions without proper guidance thereby severely damaging their case at the outset of litigation. Once these decisions are made, unfortunately victims often find themselves at a significant disadvantage in court. It is our hope that in the near future, the Beginning Over Legal Assistance Fund can provide all Beginning Over survivors the financial resources needed to access the critical legal assistance necessary to maintain custody of their children while removing themselves from the abusive relationship."

The Beginning Over Foundation was founded in memory of Heidi Markow's sister, Robin D. Shaffer, who on June 15, 2005, lost her life at the hands of her abusive husband. Its goal is to help shelter and protect families in crisis and support long term solutions to help them rebuild and sustain healthy lives, and to raise awareness about intimate partner violence through educational programs. 

The Barristers Club is located at 1114 W. Walnut Street in downtown Allentown. Dating back to 1928, it’s been owned by BALC since 1991 and underwent a $250,000 renovation in 2008. It features a Grand Ballroom with stage and balcony, multiple conference rooms, an intimate dining room, caterer-accessible kitchen, full-service bar, and hi-tech digital audio-visual equipment. It is available for rental for weddings, receptions, special events, corporate meetings and fundraising functions

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North Penn Legal Services provides free legal aid services on civil cases to low-income families, individuals, and groups in Northeastern Pennsylvania.
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Heidi Markow
Markow received the Liberty Bell Award on Monday, May 2 at a luncheon event at the Barrister’s Club in Allentown as part of Law Day 2011. The Liberty Bell Award is the Bar Association's highest honor.

Criteria for award recipients includes a person who encourages a greater respect for law and the courts; promote a better understanding of our Constitution and the Bill of Rights; contributes to the effective functioning of our institutions of government; fosters a better understanding and appreciation of the rule of law in the community; and stimulates a deeper sense of individual responsibility so that citizens recognize their rights.
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