back to Screen-Friendly page

Newsroom

The Bar Association of San Francisco Establishes Charitable Giving Goal


October 11, 2006 - San Francisco - The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) Board of Directors recently approved a resolution encouraging San Francisco law firms to  donate a percentage of their net profit using BASF's recently established charitable giving goal as a guide.

The resolution is a result of BASF's Charitable Giving Task Force's report calling for all law firms in the Bay Area to annually donate one percent of total partner compensation, the majority of which should be earmarked for non-profit legal service organizations that are providing essential legal work to persons who could not otherwise afford them.

Task force Co-Chair Richard Odgers, a partner at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP said, "We believe that the time has come to set a goal for financial support to which all firms in the Bay Area should aspire."

The task force, working closely with the bar's development department, engaged two graduate students at U.C. Berkeley's Goldman School of Public Policy to design and conduct a survey of San Francisco law firms.  The task force concluded that law firms have a special obligation to support non-profit legal service organizations that are providing essential services and advocating policy issues that are important to society.

According to James Finberg, a partner at Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP and the BASF president who appointed the task force in 2005, "We have set the goal of one percent of total partner compensation, the majority of which should be earmarked for non-profit organizations that provide legal services, because we believe that law firms have a special obligation to ensure the survival of these critical organizations.  By holding ourselves to a high standard, The Bar Association of San Francisco hopes to inspire other bars around the country to undertake similar commitments."

Another task force member, Mary Beth LaMotte, director of Community Responsibility at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP said,  "Orrick is proud to join with other law firms in making a commitment to the Charitable Giving Task Force of The Bar Association of San Francisco.  We believe we do have a responsibility to see that non-profit legal services are supported and we hope to inspire other firms both locally and nationally to join this effort.  Law firms are among the largest philanthropic donors within San Francisco and we have a unique responsibility to make sure that we maintain the legal safety net for our poorest residents."

Additional information about the BASF Charitable Giving Task Force, including the report and board resolution, can be found at www.sfbar.org/charitablegiving.


The Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) is a nonprofit voluntary membership organization of over 8,000 attorneys, law students and legal professionals in the Bay Area. Founded in 1872, BASF is one of the largest and most dynamic metropolitan bar associations in the U.S., with a long and distinguished record of community action, public service and service to the legal profession.

Questions about media relations, BASF issues currently in the news, San Francisco Attorney magazine, marketing and communications:

Contact:
Ann Murphy, Director of Communications & Public Relations
Email:
amurphy@sfbar.org
Phone:
(415) 782-9000 x8792

For general communications inquiries:

Contact:
Sayre Happich, Assistant Director of Communications & Public Relations
Email:
shappich@sfbar.org
Phone:
(415) 782-9000 x8104