Apply for a Corporate Council Pro Bono Initiative Grant

The Tennessee Bar Association is pleased to announce that it is now accepting applications for Corporate Counsel Pro Bono Initiative Grants. The awards will be funded by the money raised from the Corporate Counsel Pro Bono Initiative and will go to local access to justice organizations and partnerships with corporate legal departments and law firms to defer the costs of developing pro bono opportunities/projects specifically designed for corporate counsel.


Criteria for Awards

The projects funded will be those that appear best able to:

  • Successfully recruit and serve both volunteers and clients
  • Successfully employ the specific skills of corporate counsel in meaningful pro bono work and to employ specific skills of corporate counsel in outreach — which may include involving private practice lawyers and other members of the bar and the greater legal community in providing access to justice to the poor and underserved.
  • Meet an apparent need in the community for legal services
  • Provide measurable outcomes efficiently and effectively

Review of Applications

Applications will be reviewed first by the Tennessee Bar Association Access to Justice Coordinator and then transmitted with recommendations to designated members of the Corporate Counsel Pro Bono Working Group for funding decisions.


Requirements for Application

Each application shall include the following and not exceed three pages, single-spaced, in length (separate from the budget and any graphic timeline).

Project Narrative:

The narrative should address the following:
•    The goal of the project and specific objectives
•    Specific methods for addressing the needs of corporate counsel
•    How the project will encourage pro bono and outreach by corporate counsel
•    Needs served/ individuals and/or groups helped
•    How the project will meet the goal and specific objectives

Project Implementation:

The description of how the project will be implemented should address the following:
•    Timeline/ Business Plan
•    How volunteers will be recruited, trained, administered, and retained
•    How clients for the project will be recruited and served
•    How outcomes will be measured and reported (eg. number of corporate counsel and private bar members volunteering and number of clients served)
•    Existing resources to be employed or community partners involved

Budget:

The budget for expected expenditures to establish and maintain the project should be sufficiently detailed to provide an overview of how the funds will be used and to determine the expected benefit of each expenditure category. If the project is part of a larger project, provide details of how the requested funds will be used in the context of the larger project.

Amount Requested and Use of Funds:

The amount requested should not exceed $10,000 unless extraordinary justification can be offered as to how the additional funds are necessary to the success of the proposed project. Funds should be used primarily for the program costs for the project (duplicating training materials and forms, mailing, staff time, supplies, usage fees, etc.) rather than expenditures on equipment.

Submission of Applications

Each application must contain the name and contact information of the primary applicant who must verify and sign the application; the contact person should the person able to answer questions about the application and the proposed project. Applications shall be submitted by mail to:

The Tennessee Legal Community Foundation
Attention: Access to Justice Coordinator
221 Fourth Avenue North, Suite 400
Nashville, Tennessee 37219

Or by email to the Access to Justice Coordinator Liz Todaro


Award Notification

Applicants will be notified by the Tennessee Bar Association’s Access to Justice Coordinator within 60 days of whether or not the proposed project will be funded.


Reporting

Successful applicants who receive funding for their projects will be expected to prepare a bi-annual report, with the first report due six months after funding is received, on the progress of the project; specific outcome measurements (numbers of clients served and corporate counsel volunteering, etc.); as well as a general accounting of funds expended. A second report will be due six months later on the anniversary of the date the funding is received. Financial record keeping shall be such a manner as to provide sufficient documentation for auditing.

Reports shall be submitted by mail to:

The Tennessee Legal Community Foundation
Attention: Access to Justice Coordinator
221 Fourth Avenue North, Suite 400
Nashville, Tennessee 37219

Or by email to the Tennessee Bar Association’s Access to Justice Coordinator Liz Todaro