A young Philadelphia attorney who practices with the firm Ballard Spahr
has been tapped to receive the 2013 Sandra Day O’Connor Award for Professional Service by the American Inns of Court, a Virginia-based organization that fosters excellence in professionalism, ethics, civility and legal skills.
Daniel McKenna, a 2004 graduate of Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, will be given the award during the American Inns of Court Celebration of Excellence at the United States Supreme Court on Oct. 19, an event slated to be hosted by Justice Elena Kagan, according to the Philadelphia-based law school.
McKenna, an associate in Ballard Spahr’s litigation department, and a member of the firm’s consumer financial services, privacy and data security, and mortgage banking groups, focuses his practice on counseling financial services institutions on regulatory compliance, fair lending compliance, and litigation compliance issues, and defends clients in individual and class action cases brought by both consumers and governmental agencies, according to a professional biography.
The attorney deals in everything from mortgage-related, debt-collection and auto loan-related litigation, to arbitration and class action defense.
McKenna also serves as public service coordinator for the Young Lawyers Division of the American Bar Association, where he is charged with implementing the nationwide Wills for Heroes program, which involves volunteer attorneys and other legal professionals providing estate planning documents for first responders and other emergency workers, his biography states.
McKenna, who interned with U.S. District Judge Joseph E. Irenas, of the District of New Jersey, is also a former executive committee member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division.
McKenna and his wife, Kristen, another graduate of Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, together founded the nonprofit group Law-Suits, which provides mock trial team members with appropriate courtroom attire, the attorney’s bio states.
In the past, McKenna has been honored with the American Bar Association Star of the Year Award, the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Michael K. Smith Pro Bono Award, and the American Lawyers Media Unsung Heroes Award.
This year, he was also named a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer.
The Sandra Day O’Connor Award for Professional Service is given out each year to an American Inn of Court member who has been a lawyer for 10 years or less for excellence in public interest or pro bono work.
The American Inns of Court, based out of Alexandria, VA, comprises more than 30,000 federal, state and local jurists, lawyers and law professors, and law students in 360-plus chapters across the country.