The Delaware Bar Foundation’s mission is to improve the administration of justice in Delaware by:
• Providing legal services for the poor
• Promoting study and research in the field of law
• Fostering knowledge of citizenship rights and responsibilities
• Enhancing public respect for the rule of law
*Click here for a Special Announcement: Delaware Bar Foundation announces Bruce M. Stargatt Legal Ethics Writing Competition*
Dear Friends of the Delaware Bar Foundation:
As the Foundation moves into FY2016, I reflect upon a successful FY2015 for the Foundation, both in terms of grants made to Delaware’s civil legal services agencies, as well as disbursements of funds from the Foundation’s endowment to support various programs in Delaware communities. First, regarding grants made to Delaware’s civil legal services agencies, you will recall that in FY2014, the Board, with the approval of the Delaware Supreme Court, awarded IOLTA grants to CLASI, DVLS and LSCD totaling $650,000. I am pleased to report that in May 2015, the Board recommended to the Delaware Supreme Court, and the Court has approved, level funding of $650,000. These most recent grants bring total IOLTA grants made since 1983 to over $26 million. In addition, since 2004, the Foundation has actively sought funding for Delaware’s civil legal services agencies from the State to supplement interest generated on the IOLTA funds. The Foundation is grateful to continue to receive funds through a line item in the State’s budget for FY2016 of $600,000. This is the same amount the Foundation received from the State in both 2014 and 2015. To date, the Foundation has received over $4 million from the State to help provide legal services to needy citizens in Delaware.
In further support of civil legal services in Delaware, the Board was notified in May 2015 that the Delaware IOLTA program will receive approximately $214,000 from Bank of America as part of a settlement between BofA and the DOJ. These funds are to be used specifically for foreclosure prevention legal assistance and community development legal assistance. Also, in the first quarter of FY2015, the Board was notified that the Delaware IOLTA program will receive $540,000 from CitiCorp in connecton with a settlement between Citi and the DOJ. These funds are restricted identically to the BofA funds.
Second, in pursuit of its additional broad mission of fostering knowledge of citizenship rights and responsibilities, and enhancing the public’s respect for the rule of law (which is separate and apart from providing civil legal services to the poor), in FY2015 the Foundation continued to support various programs in Delaware communities. Those programs include the following: hosting the www.deletebullying.org website; partnering with Howard High School of Technology to provide opportunities for students to job shadow in law firms for a day; funding, in part, the Senior Lawyer Video Project; supporting, in part, the mural project in Family Court in the New Castle County Courthourse; supporting Liberty Day, which provides pocket constitutions to all fifth graders in the State; and contributing to the CCJ Golf Outing, DELREC’s inaugural Casino Night, and a Delaware Council on Gambling Problems, Inc. program. Also, in FY2015, the Foundation was the recipient of a generous donation from Justice Randy J. Holland in the form of proceeds from his book entitled Delaware’s Desiny Determined by Lewes. To date, the Foundation has received almost $12,000 from book sales. The Foundation greatly appreciates Justice Holland’s support and generosity.
The Foundation appreciates all those who attended the 2014 Office and Trial Practice seminar, which the Foundation presents in partnership with the DSBA. Each year, the seminar is organized and moderated by Justice Holland and Harvey Rubenstein. Half of the net proceeds from each year’s seminar are donated to the Foundation. To date the Foundation has received over $27,000 from proceeds from this Seminar, which are maintained in a segregated account and are used to further the Foundation’s broad mission (separate and apart from providing civil legal services to the poor) through projects in Delaware communities. The Board is currently working on an exciting new project with a private donor. This program will be announced at some point in FY2016.
Finally, thank you to all of our members and donors, who provide funding to allow the Foundation to continue supporting programs in the State that generally enhance the public’s respect for the rule of law through various ways. To that end, this year, among other things, the Board is particularly focused on seeking additional programs in Delaware communities to support, and welcomes suggestions and ideas. Please do not hesitate to contact our executive director, Melissa Flynn, or me if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions concerning the Foundation, the IOLTA funds and grants, or the programs supported by the Foundation.
Jenness E. Parker, President
The Delaware Bar Foundation helps to fund mural in the New Castle County Courthouse created by foster children. Here are a few photos from the dedication –
The mural was dedicated to Carl Schnee (a former DBF Board member) along with Judge Arsht for their commitment to the children of Delaware.