College Columns December 2018 - Page 7

submitting requests in excess of $760,000. Although all reflected worthy programs, the Grants Subcommittee carefully evaluated the requests to select those programs that were most directly linked with the mission of the College and the Foundation. In choosing programs, we look to leverage the impact of the grants we make. As a result, we typically do not provide grants for direct services to clients and instead support efforts to expand the number and reach of volunteers, through funding for trainings, coordination, or education.

Our 2018 grantees are impressive and extensive, with grantees in each of the Circuits and in 27 different states. We have grantees in large cities like New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, as well as smaller cities like Burlington, Vermont; Bloomington, Indiana and Bismarck, North Dakota. We fund a variety of programs:

• Several grantees requested funds to expand the recruitment and training of pro bono volunteers, such as the grant requests from Brooklyn Legal Services Corporation A in Brooklyn, New York and Volunteer Lawyer Network in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

• Other grantees seek funds for legal clinics to provide information on debt and bankruptcy for pro se debtors or individuals, such as the programs run by Public Law Center in Santa Ana, California and The Legal Aid Society of Cleveland in Cleveland, Ohio.

• In addition, we funded grants for programs focused on community education about debt and bankruptcy such as the programs run by Mississippi Center for Legal Services Corporation in Hattiesville, Mississippi and the CENTS program in Seattle, Washington.

• Several of the grants fund programs for particularly vulnerable populations, such as the programs for veterans and members of the military run by Veterans Legal Services in Boston, Massachusetts and Military Assistance Program in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

• And several of our grants help fund law school clinics where law students assist debtors or volunteer attorneys, such as the programs run by S. J. Quinney College of Law in Salt Lake City, Utah and Rutgers Law School in Camden, NJ.

This year the Committee selected Legal Aid Society of Milwaukee (“LAS”), as the recipient of the Michael L. Cook Extraordinary Grant, to support the introduction of the innovative “bankruptcy by-pass program” to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Based on programs implemented in Ohio and Maryland, the bankruptcy bypass program helps low income people, particularly elderly and disabled, avoid bankruptcy. These individuals may be judgment proof, but plagued by collection demands and calls, judgments and garnishments. The program aligns clients with volunteer pro bono attorneys

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From the Pro Bono Committee

Janet E. Bostwick, Janet E. Bostwick, PC

Chair, Pro Bono Committee

The Pro Bono Committee completed another successful round of grant-making, awarding $448,500 in grants to 48 legal service and nonprofit organizations. Click here to view a complete listing. The College and the Foundation continue to be the largest funders of bankruptcy pro bono and public service grants.

The members of the Pro Bono Committee work hard to ensure that the funds provided by the College and the Foundation are well spent. The hardest part of our job is choosing among so many wonderful programs. This year we again had grant requests that far exceeded our budget, with 72 organizations

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