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January 12, 2021
CONTACT: Leslie H. Smith, [email protected]
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Fay Olga Pappas (photo) is the recipient of the 2021 Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division Pro Bono Service Award. The award recognizes public service or legal aid performed by a lawyer who is 35 or younger or who has not practiced for more than five years. The award will be presented in a Jan. 28 ceremony streamed live by the Supreme Court of Florida.

The year 2020 brought unprece­dented and unexpected challenges, but Pappas found a way to make life-saving differences for those in need. She recognized an urgent need and implemented a public service project that has made a difference in lives locally and across the state.

In early April, Pappas’ brother, an Intensive Care Unit phy­sician at a local hospital, began to quarantine in an apart­ment over their garage in an effort to isolate his family from potential infection as he tended patients with COVID-19.

Pappas quickly realized that many of her brother’s col­leagues were struggling as well – from fellow physicians to nurses and other front-line workers.

Pappas contacted the Central Florida Disaster Medical Coalition, Florida House Rep. Benjamin Diamond and the Florida Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds.

Within days, she helped coordinate more than 70 RV parks and resorts across Florida with each offering no less than 30 days free housing for healthcare workers who otherwise may have been unable to afford the safe space.

Chief Judge Donald A. Meyers, Jr. writes: “Many think and plan, but do not act. Fay Pappas dares to dream. She thinks critically and carefully devises and develops plans. And then, importantly, she acts.”

Pappas attended law school at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where she served on the board of the Florida Law Review, graduating with her J.D. in 2012. Her public service efforts while still in law school garnered her recognition from The Florida Bar as a Public Service Fellow for two consecutive years. Pappas is an attorney with Bailey Fisher, PLLC, in Winter Park.

This year’s ceremony, which also honors IndividualCircuitVoluntary Bar, Law Firm, Distinguished Judicial Service and Distinguished Federal Judicial Service pro bono efforts, is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 28, at 3:30 p.m. and can be streamed live on Facebook,  WFSU: Gavel to Gavel and the Florida Channel, as well as on YouTube.

A full version of each of the honoree’s accomplishments can be found here.



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