Biography

Karen Fisher Gutheil, Esq., is the Supervising Attorney in the Pro Bono Practice of The Legal Aid Society. The Legal Aid Society is the nation’s oldest and largest provider of free legal services to the poor. The Pro Bono Practice partners with attorneys from the private bar to assist the Society's staff in handling matters for thousands of clients in their Civil, Criminal Defense and Juvenile Rights practices. Ms. Gutheil began her career at Legal Aid as a Staff Attorney in the Manhattan trial office of the Juvenile Rights Practice, representing children in Family Court for seven years in child protective and delinquency proceedings.  She then moved to the Special Litigation and Law Reform Unit of the Juvenile Rights Practice for nine years, where she focused on affirmative litigation and legislative advocacy.  Prior to joining The Legal Aid Society, Ms. Gutheil worked at New York Lawyers for the Public Interest.  Ms. Gutheil was the Chair of the Family Court and Family Law Committee of the New York City Bar Association from 2006-2009, served as a City Bar delegate to the New York State Bar Association’s House of Delegates from 2009-2013 and is currently a member of the City Bar’s Pro Bono and Legal Services Committee.  She also serves as a member from the 1st Judicial District on the New York State Bar Association’s Nominating Committee.  Ms. Gutheil chaired the New York State Bar Association’s Children and the Law Committee from 2012-2014 and currently serves on the State Bar Association’s Committee on Legal Aid.  She has also been on the faculty of the National Institute for Trial Advocacy.  In 2006, Ms. Gutheil received the Charles Schinitsky Award for outstanding service on behalf of children represented by the Juvenile Rights Practice and in 2010 was given the Servant of Justice Award by the Episcopal Diocese of New York.  Ms. Gutheil holds a B.F.A. from Drake University and a J.D. from Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law.