Rod Smith wins City of Newcastle Service Award
30 November 2009 | Posted in: Media
NEWCASTLE lawyer Rod Smith has been recognised for his pro bono work with non-profit organisation Renew Newcastle.
The Sparke Helmore lawyer was awarded the City of Newcastle Service Award for his work with the organisation that finds artistic and cultural uses for vacant and unused inner-city buildings.
Mr Smith was presented with the award, which coincided with his appointment to the Renew Newcastle Board, at an extraordinary meeting of Newcastle City Council on November 16.
He said he felt particularly passionate about assisting the group because of the good work it set out to achieve with Newcastle’s derelict buildings.
“Pro bono work is something that’s always been pretty important for us,” the lawyer, who also plays in emerging indie band the Firekites, said.
“And Renew Newcastle is something that is very important to me and very important to the city, so it didn’t take too much time to decide to help out.”
The firm’s team, consisting of Mr Smith, Alex McInnes and Danielle Larkin, handled all of the corporate compliance, tax office endorsements and lease arrangements for the not-for-profit group which has gone on to sponsor about 40 large scale artistic projects in the city.
In the year since Renew Newcastle’s establishment, more than 25 formerly empty buildings in the CBD have been used to house artistic installations, artists’ work spaces and other creative groups.
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