January 2014 Featured Volunteer: Mary Martinovich
Monday, January 13, 2014
- Organization: Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma
Mary Martinovich volunteers in the Tulsa community to help fill a need. She holds a Chemical Engineering degree from Notre Dame University and worked 6 years for Philips Petroleum in Bartlesville before leaving her job to raise a family.
After her children were grown, Mary returned to school to obtain a paralegal degree at Tulsa Community College.
A friend of Mary’s encouraged her to help at the Tulsa Courthouse Assistance Project (CAP). Mary agreed and attended Legal Aid Services CAP training provided free to all volunteer attorneys and paralegals. The purpose of CAP is to provide short-term legal assistance at the courthouse to individuals who have an immediate need for counsel in civil matters but cannot afford to hire an attorney. The cases involve landlords who are trying to evict and/or recover rent from tenants. As a paralegal Mary conducts the interview process with potential clients and assists individuals with filling out paperwork.
Through the CAP program, Mary met Legal Aid staff attorney Kimberly Moore-Waite, Housing Advocacy Coordinator. In addition to her volunteer work at the courthouse, Mary became interested in volunteering at the Tulsa Law Office. One of Legal Aid’s top five requests for assistance from applicants is to help resolve landlord and tenant legal disputes. Mary works with Kimberly on housing issues one day a week. She helps attorneys with follow-up calls to applicants with landlord/tenant issues and works with our HUD housing program.
Mary is a longtime volunteer with Catholic Charities Emergency Food Pantry where she also works with low-income individuals.
Mary's journey to becoming a volunteer with the CAP's program and then at Legal Aid started with encouragement from a friend. How do you impact a community? One individual at a time!
Thank you Mary for becoming a partner and friend of LASO’s!