Legal Aid Society

A Day In The Life

Donor Profile: Access to Justice is the Duty of All New Yorkers

When asked why she supports The Legal Aid Society, Marian Brancaccio’s answer was simple: it’s her duty. Not just as a lawyer, but as a New Yorker. “It’s the duty of all people to support access to justice,” she explained.

Marian has always been interested in helping vulnerable people, but it wasn’t until law school that she learned of organizations like The Legal Aid Society and the enormous need for legal services. As a young lawyer, she took on a pro bono case to help a woman obtain a life-changing divorce, and as the years went on, her appreciation for the work of organizations like The Legal Aid Society has grown.

A New York City resident for the past 17 years and a lawyer for 30, Marian has seen how everyone has legal needs, even if they aren’t always aware of them. “There are so many ways the law touches our lives on a daily basis,” she explained, “and wealth should not be a determinant of access to legal assistance.”

Marian is a graduate of the Columbia Law School in the City of New York and currently serves as Chief Compliance Officer for Deerfield Management Company, a healthcare investment firm. As a lawyer, Marian is occasionally asked for legal advice from her friends and family, but for people without those connections and resources, the stakes are so much higher. “If you are looking for shelter or if you are a veteran trying to get health benefits, those are life-altering situations, and you shouldn’t be on your own trying to navigate a complex legal and regulatory framework,” she says.

Having supported The Legal Aid Society as a donor for the past seven years, Marian is eager to continue her involvement and hopes that in the future she can donate her time as well. Over the last year, she has deepened her connection by being a part of the Justice Network, Legal Aid’s new annual membership program, which she says, “has been a really enriching experience both personally and professionally.” Having access to training programs and getting an inside look at the important work Legal Aid does every day has helped her become a stronger ambassador for justice.

Hopeful that all New Yorkers get involved with The Legal Aid Society, Marian pointed out, “Everyone who has a legal need should get the support, guidance, and assistance that they deserve.”