Law School's Medical-Legal Partnership for Children wins national award

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Dina Shek, (808) 791-9470
MLPC Legal Director and Co-Founder, William S. Richardson School of Law
Beverly A. Creamer, (808) 389-5736
Media Consultant, William S. Richardson School of Law
Posted: May 4, 2014

MLPC celebrates its fifth anniversary and national recognition.
MLPC celebrates its fifth anniversary and national recognition.

The state’s pioneering Medical-Legal Partnership for Children in Hawai‘i (MLPC) has won national recognition for the free legal services it provides to vulnerable families in tandem with their community-based health care.

At the recent 2014 Medical-Legal Partnership Summit held in Seattle, Washington, MLPC Hawai‘i was one of two organizations recognized by the National Center for Medical Legal Partnership (NCMLP) and honored with a “2014 Outstanding Medical-Legal Partnership Award.”

MLPC Hawai‘i works within the Kokua Kalihi Valley Wellness Center, providing legal services to hundreds of families served by the grassroots community health center. In its five years of operation, the legal team has served more than 500 clients.

Since its beginning in 2009, MLPC Hawai‘i has earned its reputation as “a model site” among the National Network of 231 health-care sites in 34 states for providing exemplary integration of health and legal care as it addresses a broad spectrum of social determinants of health for families it serves.

The MLPC team was formed as a project of the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawai‘i and involves both law students and law graduates in its work.

The entire MLPC Hawai‘i team was in Seattle to receive the award, including Dina Shek ’06, Legal Director and co-founder; Dr. Alicia Turlington, Medical Director; Randy Compton ’12, Staff Attorney; and U‘ilani Goods ’13, Law Fellow. Compton and Goods are both graduates of the WSRSL Ulu Lehua Scholars program.

In her remarks upon receiving the award, Shek said, “Our MLP team sees our role as neighbors, as part of the community.  We're not just professionals reaching across disciplines.  We're professionals reaching through the trappings of professionalism to work hand-in-hand, side-by-side, with our patients, clients, children -- our community.

“None of us would be in this room today if we didn't believe that communities we serve are vibrant, full of promise and hope, talented, and often are their own best advocates and carry their own best solutions."

The national award was presented by NCMLP Board Member Dr. Ed Paul, Director of Medical Education at Yuma Regional Medical Center and Professor of Family & Community Medicine at the University of Arizona in Tucson.

About MLPC Hawai‘i
MLPC is a project of the William S. Richardson School of Law (WSRSL) at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and Kokua Kalihi Valley Comprehensive Family Services (KKV), a federally qualified health center.  MLPC lawyers and doctors work together to deliver legal care to patient families on-site at the health center.  We do this because there are 50,000 children living in poverty in Hawai‘i who need legal care to be healthy.


Dina Shek, MLPC Legal Director and co-founder
office phone:  (808) 791-9470
cell phone: (808) 371-2698