Bullock Honors Two Outstanding Victim Advocates
HELENA – Attorney General Steve Bullock on Tuesday honored two Missoula women for devoting their careers to giving victims of domestic violence and other crimes a voice in Montana’s criminal justice system.
Attorney Amy Rubin and Probation and Parole Officer Cathy Dorle were honored at an afternoon ceremony at the Missoula County Courthouse.
“I am truly honored to recognize two individuals who consistently show respect and compassion for victims, and who come to work day after day and give their very best to tough jobs, whether or not anyone ever notices the important work they do and the extra effort they give,” Bullock said.
For the past decade, Dorle has worked as a full-time pre-sentence investigation (PSI) writer in Missoula. As such, she is often the first person in the criminal justice system to hear a victim’s account of how a crime affected his or her life.
Pre-sentence investigations are critical pieces of information for a judge in determining the appropriate sentence for criminal offenders. Dorle was recognized for treating each victim with dignity and respect, and for producing victim impact statements that are complete, accurate and well-written.
Nomination letters for Dorle praised her “extraordinary patience and compassion” in dealing with victims.
Attorney Amy Rubin was recognized for two decades as a champion of domestic violence victims as well as the attorneys who assist them.
Rubin set up and supervised attorneys for two federally funded Legal Assistance for Victims programs – one in Sanders County and another in Lake County. She also serves as the Supervising Attorney for the DOVES Confederated Salish & Kootenai Legal Assistance for Victims program.
Rubin was an integral part of launching the Missoula Family Law Self-Help Center, spending hours drafting forms and securing a grant from the Montana Supreme Court. In three years, the Center has almost doubled its original funding, enlists approximately 15 volunteer attorneys and law students, and has helped over 2,000 people.
Rubin also mentors new attorneys interested in representing domestic violence victims, helping them learn effective strategies for their cases and to keep their clients safe. She has also arranged and led seminars on domestic violence issues for lawyers and others who work in the legal system.
Rubin was nominated for the award by seven people, all of whom noted her commitment to providing access to justice for low-income individuals, particularly the victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking.