Illinois Bar Foundation Board (George Mahoney, Member) Announces Grant Guidelines for Charitable and Educational Programs


ISBA Bar News and Illinois Courts Bulletin

The Illinois Bar Foundation board has adopted new grant guidelines and a streamlined process that will provide a more objective and consistent review of applications for funding.

The board also has set a once-a-year deadline of Oct. 1 for applications to be submitted, rather than the previous deadlines of Jan. 1 and July 1. Site visits will be made to all applicants that meet the grant guidelines. Awards will be approved during a board meeting each April.

The Bar Foundation guidelines indicate preferences for projects that are designed to accomplish the following:

* Encourage and promote legal assistance to the poor, elderly and disadvantaged.
* Encourage pro bono legal representation.
* Reduce the incidence of domestic violence.
* Make the court system more accessible to the public, especially in regard to matters involving children.
* Reduce recidivism among juvenile and adult offenders.

Funding may also be provided for programs that:

* Strengthen the court system or the administration of justice.
* Help the public to understand people’s rights and responsibilities under the law.
* Enhance the ethical and professional practice of law.

While the foundation board prefers projects that have statewide or regional impact, it will consider local programs that show evidence of significant community support.

Preference may also be given to new or innovative projects that require seed money to launch and result from collaborations among multiple organizations.

The following types of activities will be generally disfavored or excluded:

* Additions to endowments.
* Continuing legal education programs, unless they are experimental or promote pro bono services.
* Operating expenses, unless an applicant’s mission fits squarely within preferred activities described above.

For more information about the grant application process, access the Web site,, or call executive director Susan M. Pierson at (312) 726-6072.

Joliet/Main Office

822 Infantry Drive, Suite 100
Joliet, Illinois 60435

Phone: 815-730-9500

Oswego Office

126 South Main Street
Oswego, Illinois 60543

Phone: 630-554-7800

Morris Office

116 E. Washington Street
Morris, Illinois 60450

Phone: 815-513-5437