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Law alumnus recognized for going above and beyond

Loyola press release - May 27, 2014

The Loyola University New Orleans College of Law will pay tribute to the president of the New Orleans Bar Association, a lawyer and volunteer activist known for his compassion for law colleagues throughout the state, who are struggling with family deaths or catastrophic illnesses or injury. For his selfless work and volunteer service to the university, Loyola alumnus and adjunct professor of law Mark Surprenant, J.D. ‘77 will receive the 2014 Glass Honoree award at the 73rd Louisiana State Bar Association’s annual meeting Tuesday, June 3, from 6-8 p.m., at John Wehner’s Village Door, located at 136 Fisherman’s Cove in Destin, Fla.

Advanced registration is available for $45.00 ($50 at the door). For more information, contact Jennifer Jumonville at 504-861-5741. All proceeds benefit the College of Law Alumni Association Scholarship Fund.

Surprenant, a partner with Adams and Reese law firm in New Orleans where he serves as liaison partner of the Pro Bono Services Committee, has also served as the president of both the Loyola Law Alumni Association and the Loyola University Alumni Association. Surprenant’s compassion is evident in the organizations he has created, right down to their names: He established HUGS, Adams and Reese’s corporate philanthropy program in 1988 and CA&RE, the firm’s official pro bono program in 2000. In 2002, he co-founded the statewide organization Support of Lawyers/Legal Personnel All Concern Encouraged, known as SOLACE Inc. The organization consists of 8,500 volunteers throughout Louisiana and has chapters in 18 other cities across the country. It reaches out to assist judges, lawyers, court personnel, paralegals, legal secretaries and their families who have experienced some significant, potentially life-changing event in their lives. The program is coordinated in Louisiana by the Louisiana State Bar Association/Louisiana Bar Foundation's Community Action Committee.

He and his wife, College of Law alumna, Monica Surprenant, J.D. ‘78, established the Mark and Monica Surprenant Scholarship, awarded to civil and common law students at Loyola’s College of Law every other year. Mark also led the effort to create the Law Class of 1977 Scholarship. He received The Times-Picayune’s 2012 Loving Cup award as well as the Louisiana State Bar Association’s 2014 David A. Hamilton Lifetime Achievement Award, both given for his pro bono legal work and long history of volunteerism.

“Forty years ago, Loyola admitted me as a law school student and thus provided me with a much appreciated opportunity to be a lawyer. I was very thankful to Loyola then, and I am even more thankful today for this fantastic honor which Loyola has bestowed upon me. During the years, my relationship with Loyola has enriched my life in numerous ways for which I am forever grateful,” Surprenant said.