THE HISTORY OF THE UABA
The Ukrainian American Bar Association [UABA] was formed in 1977 at the first national convention of Ukrainian American attorneys in Cleveland, Ohio. [see Svoboda article from 1977] The UABA was forged out of a desire to work more closely on a national level with the Ukrainian community and its organizations, and to stand in defense of its Ukrainian brethren. A separate federal tax-exempt IRC 501 (c)(3) corporation, The UABA Scholarship Fund Inc., was formed in the 1980's for the purpose of providing monetary assistance to needy students enrolled in law programs.
Some of the pro bono initiatives and causes in which the UABA and/or its members were involved with or supported in the last quarter century include: Human Rights-Dissidents Defense; Estate matters involving citizens of the Soviet Union; the protestation of the ABA-Soviet Lawyers Agreement; Myroslav Medvid-INS proceedings; UABA v. Schultz (INS lawsuit), Ivan Demjanjuk proceedings; Walter Polowchak; Stepan Chmara Defense; the formation of the World Congress of Ukrainian Jurists and participation in four World Congresses in Ukraine; development of a working relationship with Ukrainian judges, jurists and government officials; Rule of Law-Legal Reform Projects for Ukraine; the New Constitution of Ukraine; CBS 60 MINUTES "The Ugly Face of Freedom" FCC and legal proceedings; U.S.A.I.D. grants for Commercial Law Projects; UABA Scholarship grants for Ukrainian jurists and law students; commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of "Akcija Wisla"; assistance to Ukrainian Embassy and Consular offices in U.S.; and Congressional Lobbying.
Many UABA members are directors and officers of various Ukrainian American as well as, American organizations and associations, and often provide prominent leadership and active community support on a local level.