In the past three years, Florida Bar sections and divisions have contributed more than $660,000 to The Florida Bar Foundation. Some of their most recent gifts were announced at The Florida Bar’s Annual Convention in June.
Business Law Section makes $50,000 gift to the Foundation
The Florida Bar Business Law Section has made a $50,000 gift to The Florida Bar Foundation to help the organization through the current period of reduced revenue from Florida’s Interest on Trust Accounts Program.
“We see it as being in the best interest of all Floridians, including the business community, for people at all levels of our society to have access to our courts,” said 2013-14 Business Law Section Chair Stephen Nagin of Peretz Chesel Herrmann in Miami.”
And we see the Foundation as an essential institution in making sure that happens, not only through support of Florida’s legal aid organizations but also in implementing positive change within our justice system in terms of fairness, effectiveness and efficiency.”
In recent years a number of Bar sections and divisions have donated funds from their reserves to the Foundation, which has helped soften the cuts in grants to legal aid organizations throughout the state as the Foundation’s once-healthy reserve has begun nearing depletion.
“This generous gift from the Business Law Section is just one more example of the steadfast support Florida lawyers have shown during these challenging times,” said 2013-14 Florida Bar Foundation President John Patterson. “We thank the Section’s leadership and members. We can’t say enough about the outpouring we have received from The Florida Bar, its sections and divisions, and from Bar members all over the state.”
Trial Lawyers Section increases its 2014 giving to $75,000
The Florida Bar Trial Lawyers Section has made its second gift to the Foundation in 2014, adding $25,000 to its initial $50,000 gift.
The Section was the first of several Florida Bar sections and divisions to come forward with a major gift when the Foundation had to begin reducing its funding to legal aid grantees after extremely low interest rates cut sharply into the income earned through Florida’s Interest on Trust Accounts (IOTA) Program.
“Hundreds of Floridians have gotten desperately needed legal help in recent years as a result of the generosity of Florida’s trial lawyers,” said Senior Judge Emerson R. Thompson Jr., Florida Bar Foundation president. “Their dedication to the cause is truly remarkable.”
With total giving for the year of $75,000, the Section has now contributed a total of $225,000 in three years.
“The Trial Lawyers Section is so glad to have been able to match our $75,000 in giving for a third year,” said Hector Moré, the Section’s chair. “We share the Foundation’s mission of ensuring access to justice and are confident in the ability of its leadership not only to weather the extended IOTA revenue slump, but to innovate and emerge even stronger than before. In the meantime, we wanted to continue to do our part.”