LSC Awards First Vieth Grants to Support Leadership Training in Civil Legal Aid

Vieth Grants
December 16, 2015

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that seven legal aid organizations will receive grants from its new G. Duane Vieth Leadership Development Program, LSC’s first grant initiative to support training in leadership skills in the field of civil legal aid.

Generously funded by the Arnold & Porter LLP Foundation, the program will award grants each year to leaders of LSC-funded organizations to support training, coaching, or other professional development in non-profit leadership skills.

The competitive grant program honors long-time Arnold & Porter Managing Partner G. Duane “Bud” Vieth, who joined the firm in 1949 and is now a retired partner, and highlights the importance of developing entrepreneurial and business acumen among leaders of civil legal aid organizations. 

"Bud Vieth led Arnold & Porter superbly for 22 years, and it is fitting that a program to foster strong management skills in the field of civil legal aid should be named for a person who demonstrated those skills so ably in guiding his firm," said LSC President Jim Sandman, himself a former managing partner of Arnold & Porter.

By funding these pioneering grants, Arnold & Porter demonstrates its commitment to leadership development in the civil legal aid community. 

"We stand with LSC to help further their mission to provide civil legal aid to those in need, and are honored to be a part of this prodigious program," said Arnold & Porter Managing Partner Richard Alexander. "Congratulations to all of the deserving grantees."

The program received 24 applications this year and made the following awards:

California Rural Legal Assistance 
California Rural Legal Assistance will use its $10,000 grant to enroll staff in courses on financial leadership, planning, and literacy. The organization’s two deputy directors will participate in an individualized program at OneJustice, a nonprofit that seeks to build infrastructure and partnerships in the legal aid community. Senior managers and board members will take part in CompassPoint Finance Training. These courses will prepare staff and board members to develop high-quality budgets and financial reports in order to make strategic and financially sound decisions for the organization.

Community Legal Services of Mid-Florida, Inc. 
Community Legal Services of Mid-Florida, Inc. (CLSMF) will use its $10,000 award to support leadership training and development. CLSMF will hire a consultant to assist with its strategic planning, including defining the organization’s strategy and mission, as well as developing better systems for allocating resources. Staff and board members will participate in this training, which will run seven-to-nine months.

New Mexico Legal Aid 
New Mexico Legal Aid was awarded $10,000 to support an Excellence in Action program that will create a new statewide culture of emerging leaders from among NMLA’s management, staff, and board. The project’s goal is to design and implement an organization-wide leadership development program.

Legal Aid of Wyoming, Inc. 
Legal Aid of Wyoming will use its $9,500 grant to fund training and development in finance and accounting for four full-time employees and four finance committee board members. The organization will hire a consultant to assist in the development of strong fiscal oversight policies and train key personnel in implementing these policies. This grant award will improve the organization’s annual budget planning and day-to-day financial management.

Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County 
Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County will use its $5,000 grant to enroll its supervising attorney in the OneJustice Executive Fellow Program. This leadership development program supports and trains executive directors and emerging leaders in core business and management skills. Through this program, NLSLA aims to enhance its fundraising, communications, development, and evaluation capabilities.

Indiana Legal Services, Inc. 
Indiana Legal Services (ILS) was awarded $3,140 to support leadership development. The organization’s executive director will take courses in fundraising, financial analysis, and program evaluation at the School of Philanthropy at Indiana University in order to assist ILS with bringing in additional donations and grants and properly allocating its funding.

Appalachian Research and Defense Fund of Kentucky
Appalachian Research and Defense Fund of Kentucky (AppalReD) was awarded $2,350 for grants management training. The organization’s executive director and director of Human Resources, Development, and Compliance will attend a training session that will enhance AppalReD’s ability to manage its grant funds effectively and efficiently.

This is the first named initiative to result from LSC’s Campaign for Justice, a private fundraising effort to expand the impact and capacity of civil legal aid providers across the country. 
The 134 LSC-funded legal aid programs will each be eligible to receive one grant of up to $10,000 every five years. 

Legal Services Corporation (LSC) is an independent nonprofit established by Congress in 1974 to provide financial support for civil legal aid to low-income Americans. The Corporation currently provides funding to 134 independent non-profit legal aid programs in every state, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories.