Evelyn is a resident of Howard County, a native of Annapolis, Maryland, and the 11th African American woman ever to be admitted to the Maryland Bar. As a graduate of the Morgan State University and the University of Maryland School of Law, she completed the Harvard Law School Institute for Lawyers with a special emphasis on Class Action Torts and Constitution Law. Evelyn founded the Law Offices of Addison-Darden, a mother-son law firm, on April 1, 1988, and enjoy working side-by-side with her son, attorney Mark Darden, who brings his unique perspective and critical thinking to each of her cases.
Her legal career began in 1976, and over four decades included representation at the local, state, and federal levels. Her early legal training began at Johnson and Smith under the Honorable Judge Kenneth L. Johnson, a trail-blazing civil rights attorney. As an associate at Johnson and Smith and later as a supervisory trial attorney at the Baltimore District Office of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Evelyn was responsible for several major class action Title VII cases against Fortune 500 companies in Maryland, Delaware, and Virginia. These class action civil rights cases focused primarily on Black and female police officers, firefighters, dockers, and steel workers in Maryland and across the nation whom the system had deprived of equal pay, promotions, and other benefits and who had suffered the consequences of wrongful discharge, demotions and failure to hire. As a result of these Title VII class action lawsuits, sweeping changes were made in the Baltimore City Police Department and Fire Department. Black police chiefs, Black fire chiefs, and other high-ranking officers across the United States finally received their justice through these lawsuits.
As one of the first African American women to serve as an Assistant Attorney General for the Stateof Maryland, in January 1983, Evelyn accompanied Kurt L. Schmoke to the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office and was assigned to the Special Narcotics and Homicide Units. There she prosecuted numerous jury trials and eliminated several major drug rings in Baltimore City.
Her extensive trial experience includes a five-year partnership with renowned trial attorney Johnny Cochran who nominated me for the National Trial Lawyer of the Year for Public Justice Award In 2002. Her trial experience afforded me a two-term position on the Board of Governors for the Maryland Trial Attorneys. She served on the Legislative Committee and was instrumental in lobbying to repeal the Parent-Child Immunity Law in Maryland. In private practice, she as consistently focused on keeping Maryland families safe and securing justice and significant monetary awards for victims of negligence.
Evelyn’s awards include national recognition and the Maryland Trial Lawyer of the Year Award for the landmark settlement in Gary J. v. State of Maryland, for 4.5 million dollars, including an education fund for 900 male juveniles who were physically and emotionally abused at the Juvenile Boot Camps in Western Maryland.
A little-known fact about Evelyn is that she is a maternal descendant of Marylander Rev. Samuel Green, Sr., 1802 – 1877, an Underground Railroad Conductor, Visionary Founder of Morgan State University (her Alma Mater), and first cousin to Harriet Tubman. Rev. Green was the only person ever caught, arrested, and sentenced to 10 years in State Penitentiary in 1857 for possessing the anti-slavery publication, Uncle Tom’s Cabin.
Coming from this legacy of civil rights advocates, she is honored to continue fighting for justice and serving the community as a volunteer, providing Pro Bono counsel for several organizations, and as an international motivational and cultural awareness speaker.
Each case Evelyn takes on is personal to her, and her clients will tell you they have complete access to her, including her mobile phone number. She created the Law Offices of Addison-Darden with a vision of accessibility to her clients. You can expect someone who will listen to you and be clear about your case and the options you will have from working with her.