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McDonald's Recognized for Providing Pro Bono Legal Counsel to Area Communities In Need

Dec 8, 2000

McDonald's Corporation (NYSE: MCD) was presented with the Pro Bono Initiative Award for 2000 by the Chicago-based Public Interest Law Initiative (PILI) for providing professional legal services and advocacy to low income individuals and public service organizations in need of legal counsel or representation. The award was presented yesterday during PILI's 16th Annual Award Luncheon at the Fairmont Hotel in downtown Chicago.

"We are extremely honored by this award and the recognition it brings to our community efforts," said Jeffery B. Kindler, McDonald's Executive Vice President and General Counsel. "The Public Interest Law Initiative is a highly respected and well-known organization dedicated to promoting public interest law and working for legal justice. We are very proud recipients of this award," added Kindler.

Oak Brook-based McDonald's has a long history of community service and volunteerism. It dates back to 1955 when Ray Kroc founded the company on the premise of "giving back to the communities we serve." McDonald's recently adopted a new Pro Bono Policy which affects more than 200 corporate attorneys, paralegals and legal support staff based in the United States. "This policy reinforces what we've been doing as volunteers in our communities for many years and encourages our legal staff to do even more," said Kindler.

After accepting the award on behalf of the company, Pauline Levy, McDonald's Senior Counsel, expressed appreciation to PILI for their assistance in formalizing community volunteer efforts for the company's legal staff.

"McDonald's should be commended for making such a wonderful commitment to community service," said David T. Erie, President of Public Interest Law Initiative. "The cost of legal services has become prohibitive for low income individuals and many organizations in our community. For McDonald's to adopt a policy encouraging its legal staff to take on pro bono work is a sign of corporate leadership and a commitment to community service," added Erie.

During his remarks at the luncheon, the Honorable Judge Ruben Castillo, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois said, "I salute McDonald's Corporation and hope more corporations will follow the example they are setting with respect to their pro bono commitment."

The Public Interest Law Initiative was founded more than 20 years ago as a program for law students at Chicago-based organizations dedicated to public interest law.

McDonald's is the world's largest foodservice retailer with more than 28,000 restaurants, serving more than 43 million customers each day, in 120 countries. More than 85 percent of McDonald's restaurants around the world are owned and operated by independent, local businessmen and women.


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SOURCE: McDonald's Corporation

Contact: William Whitman, 630-623-6745, or, or
Cathy Nemeth, 630-623-3753, or, both of McDonald's