Pine Tree Legal head honored by MCLU


Nan Heald, executive director of Pine Tree Legal Assistance, will be presented with the 2010 Justice Louis Scolnik Award by the Maine Civil Liberties Association during its annual dinner in Freeport May 6.

Heald, of Portland, has helped expand access to justice for traditionally disadvantaged groups, including native Americans and young people, according to an MCLU release. She began work at Pine Tree Legal in 1985 as a staff attorney.

“Maine is a better place because of Nan Heald’s efforts,” said Shenna Bellows, executive director of the MCLU, in the release. “She has engaged the public in an ongoing dialogue about the legal needs of the poor and encouraged new levels of support for legal services to meet those needs.”

The Scolnik Award was established in 1989 and is named after former Maine Supreme Court Justice Louis Scolnik, a Lewiston native. He was also a founder and first president of the MCLU. The award honors members of Maine’s legal community who have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to the protection of civil liberties, according to the release.