Remembering David Brown, co-founder and long time Board Member of DVLS

  It is with great sorrow that the Board of Directors and staff of Delaware Volunteer Legal Services, Inc. (“DVLS”) announce the passing of co-founder and long-time Board member David Brown.  DVLS would not exist if it were not for forward thinking, generous, and tenacious advocates like David.  He was part of the Delaware State Bar Association’s Pro Bono Legal Services Committee that created DVLS in 1981.   On November 6, 1981, DVLS’ Certificate of Corporation was filed, and David accepted a volunteer appointment as one of the first members of the DVLS Board of Directors.  He served as Board President for DVLS from 1984 until 1996 and remained a member of the Board of Directors until his recent untimely passing.  David helped DVLS navigate through both good and troubled times and through many changes and growth.

During David’s tenure as a Board member, DVLS grew from a small operation with a budget of $30,000, a staff of one and a half and 150 volunteer attorneys to its current size with a budget over $2.5 million, a staff of twelve and a volunteer roster of over 600.  David’s historical knowledge, innovative thinking and compassion helped DVLS become the agency it is today.   He genuinely cared about DVLS and more importantly cared about the people DVLS assists.

David had a special relationship with the staff of DVLS.  He was soft spoken but the words he spoke were powerful.  He looked out for the agency as a whole and for the people who worked there.  We could always count on his sage advice and insightful perspective when steering DVLS through periods of change.  He found innovative ways to help. For example, when DVLS was looking to move to a larger space at the Delaware Law School, David, through his firm, Potter Anderson & Corroon, created the Potter Anderson Challenge by donating $25,000 for construction costs for our new space and challenged other firms to do the same.  Through this challenge, DVLS was able to raise all the funds necessary for our new space.

The success of DVLS is in large part due to the longstanding commitment, unwavering support, and irreplaceable friendship of David Brown.  The loss of this great man is shared by his family, friends, colleagues, DVLS and the community as a whole and he will be greatly missed.


Senator Chris Coons speaks about the legacy of David Brown.


  • Pro Bono