Attorney of the Month Award for Pima County
By Michele Mirto
Rudy Valenzuela has been selected as the Outstanding Pro Bono Attorney of the Month for January. Rudy joined Southern Arizona Legal Aid’s Volunteer Lawyers Program in 1992. Since joining the VLP, Rudy has assisted 653 clients. He is a frequent participant in the VLP’s family law clinics, conducting the clinics in both English and Spanish. Recently, Rudy expanded his participation in the VLP by agreeing to assist the program with minor guardianship clinics. In late 2013, the VLP begin to offer the Minor Guardianship Clinic in Spanish. Rudy was the first attorney to volunteer to assist with this new clinic. With his help, many children now have legal guardians and can be enrolled in school and receive necessary medical care.
The VLP’s monthly award is a distinct honor: of the nearly 1200 attorneys who volunteer their time with VLP, only 12 receive the VLP’s Outstanding Pro Bono Attorney award each year.
Q & A with Rudy Valenzuela
Where are you from? Tucson, Arizona.
Where did you go to college? University of Arizona.
Where did you go to law school? University of Arizona.
How long have you lived in Tucson? Fifty-three years.
What are your current practice areas? Personal Injury, criminal defense and family law.
What drives you to volunteer with VLP? I enjoy giving back to the community.
Anyone you would like to acknowledge for contributing to your legal career / pro bono service? I would like to thank the VLP for inviting me to participate.
One reason you would encourage attorneys to volunteer with VLP? It’s rewarding and you meet good people.
Other volunteers you’d like to give a shout-out to? Luis Ochoa and Juan Perez-Medrano.
Favorite Tucson restaurant? Sushi Garden
Things you do when not working or volunteering your legal services? Coaching and playing baseball/softball.
Best thing about being an attorney in Tucson? Community.
Worst thing about being an attorney in Tucson? No complaints.
Things that you wish were closer to your office? Courthouse.
Are you a dog or a cat person? Dog.
What do you do to unwind after work? Follow Wildcat sports teams.
Favorite song? Ez like Sunday Morning.
Person you most admire? Lincoln.
Food you can’t live without? Sushi and chicken.
Any bad habits? Coke a Cola
Best vacation destination? Cancun, Mexico