Richard B. Gossett of Baker Donelson has been recognized by the Tennessee Bar Association as the 2021 recipient of its Harris Gilbert Pro Bono Volunteer of the Year Award.
The Harris Gilbert Award recognizes significant pro bono work by a private attorney. This award is given to an attorney who has contributed significant amounts of pro bono work, either in terms of numbers of cases handled or significance of the work as well as one who demonstrates dedication to the development and delivery of legal services to the poor.
Mr. Gossett was recognized for his commitment and extensive pro bono hours assisting clients through Tennessee Free Legal Answers, the American Bar Association's virtual legal clinic platform. Mr. Gossett provided more than 200 hours responding to questions on Free Legal Answers, making him among the largest contributors in the state.
The ABA Free Legal Answers website, which originated in Tennessee a decade ago and which Baker Donelson helped develop, has been licensed as a free service for low-income clients in 43 states. More than 130,000 pro bono legal questions have been answered through the site, which has more than 8,300 volunteer lawyers. Similar software has been licensed to pro bono agencies in Australia, England and Wales.
Senior counsel in Baker Donelson's Chattanooga office, Mr. Gossett concentrates his practice in banking, business bankruptcy, reorganizations and creditors rights. He has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America since 1995 and in Mid-South Super Lawyers since 2006. He was named the Chattanooga "Lawyer of the Year" (Banking Law) by The Best Lawyers in America in 2009 and 2014. In 2020, Mr. Gossett was recognized by Baker Donelson as its Chattanooga Pro Bono Attorney of the Year. He is a member of the American, Georgia and Tennessee Bar Associations.