Non-profit law firm gets $65K grant, new finance director

Legal Services of the Hudson Valley, the White Plains-based agency that offers free legal advice in civil cases to low-income residents, now has an extra $65,000 to help unemployed people who are struggling.

The Westchester Community Foundation recently gave the agency a $65,000 grant to pay an attorney to handle public benefits cases and related housing matters from the White Plains office. According to the agency, the lawyer will help clients get or keep unemployment insurance and healthcare benefits, as well as other income and benefits, so they can stay in their homes and care for their family.

“We are so grateful for their shared commitment to our mission of improving the lives of the underserved in Westchester,” LSHV Executive Director Barbara Finkelstein said in a statement. “Together our two organizations are making positive and real changes in the lives of county residents. The current economic downturn makes our work more important than ever.”

Making sure the money is used properly will be Carol Ann Malinowski’s job. She has been named LSHV’s new director of finance and administration and will oversee the agency’s $8.5 million budget, as well as its 67-member staff.

Malinowski has more than 20 years of finance, strategic planning, and management experience with non-profit and corporate organizations, according to LSHV. She has been a senior financial advisor to McQuilling Services in Garden City, N.Y.; vice president of finance and investment manager for Northern Navigation International in Stamford, Conn. and vice president of finance services for the Girl Scouts. She also has worked for The Breast Treatment Task Force of NYC and the Cancer Support Community of Branford, Connecticut.

Irvington woman joins state task force on poverty law

We’re back after a brief break with more news from local courts and the legal community in the Lower Hudson Valley ….

Barbara Finkelstein, head of the White Plains-based group Legal Services of the Hudson Valley, will join a statewide task force to expand legal services to low-income New Yorkers in civil cases such as foreclosures, food stamps, unemployment benefits, orders of protection, child support and other civil cases. Finkelstein, an Irvington resident, has been spearheading such efforts for the past 15 years in Westchester and six other counties north of New York City.

According to a news release, Finkelstein will work with judges, law firm partners, union officials, heads of legal services groups and managers of corporate legal departments to raise money for struggling New Yorkers so they can get legal assistance at a time when the demand for such help is on the rise and government funding is dropping.

For more information, go to www.lshv.org.