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Meet the 2023 Guiding Lights

Each year, Smokeball recognizes exemplary pro bono work through its prestigious Beacon Award. To spotlight the many legal professionals committed to pro bono work year-round, we honor Guiding Lights. These individuals make a positive impact by giving back to their clients and community. If you or someone you know is doing amazing pro bono work, share the story with us.

Nominate a Guiding Light
Eleanor Endzel
January 2024

Eleanor Endzel

Endzel Law

Nora has committed to pro bono work through Chicago Volunteer Legal Services since 2013. For more than a decade she's provided free legal services to families in need while running her own family law practice. Eleanor was in the Justice Entrepreneurs Project (JEP) first cohort of lawyers and continued her pro bono work after she was required to as a JEP member, setting an example for attorneys that succeeded her.

Michelle Freeman
November 2023

Michele Freeman

Freeman-Widell Law Office

Through the Indian Child Welfare Program at Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Michele provides guardian ad litem services to advocate for the best interest of children in Shawnee, Oklahoma. She is involved from the beginning until reunification or termination, which can take a year or more. Michele averages 15 cases at all times.

About the Smokeball Beacon Award

Smokeball clients are community heroes. The annual Beacon Award recognizes legal professionals whose exceptional pro bono work has changed the lives of veterans, victims of domestic abuse, immigrant families, homeowners facing foreclosure, and others in their communities.

Go to Beacon Award
2023 Smokeball Beacon Award Winner Chlece Walker-Neal-Murray