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Covington’s Hester and Pemberton Receive Civic Leadership Award

May 30, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC, May 30, 2014 — Voices for a Second Chance, a Washington-based nonprofit organization that assists incarcerated and recently released men and women, honored Covington & Burling partners Timothy Hester and Alan Pemberton with its Charles A. Horsky Civic Leadership Award for their commitment to public service and prisoners’ rights.

“This is a tremendous honor for Covington,” said Mr. Hester, chair of the firm’s management committee. “The firm’s relationship with Voices for a Second Chance goes back more than three decades, and we are proud to support its important work bridging the gap between incarceration and restarting in the community.”

Founded in 1969, Voices for a Second Chance provides a network of services to prisoners while they are incarcerated and newly released in order to create, maintain and strengthen family and community ties. The Charles A. Horsky Civic Leadership Award is named after a longtime Covington partner. Charlie Horsky joined Covington in 1939 and dedicated a substantial part of his career to public service and pro bono activities. He argued many cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, including Korematsu v. United States, which challenged the wartime internment of Americans of Japanese ancestry. He also served as a Nuremberg prosecutor and later as White House adviser on national capital affairs for Presidents Kennedy and Johnson.

Mr. Hester, a partner in the firm’s antitrust and litigation practice groups, has represented death row inmates since his first week at Covington, in the fall of 1983. His pro bono death penalty cases have taken him across the South, to Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, South Carolina and Virginia. His work has resulted in precedent-setting rulings touching on issues such as the denial of funding for a proper defense, ineffective assistance of counsel, and suppression of exculpatory evidence.

Mr. Pemberton is co-chair of the firm's government contracts practice group and chair of the public service committee. The majority of his pro bono work has involved the rights of incarcerated people. He represented inmates at the Lorton Reformatory in the 1980s and 1990s and currently serves as plaintiffs’ counsel in Jerry M. v. District of Columbia, an ongoing class action that has resulted in significant reforms to the city’s juvenile justice system. Mr. Pemberton also supervises the firm’s representation of 14 Guantanamo detainees in habeas litigation and represents numerous charitable organizations in government contracts matters.

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