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BASF Foundation Announces the 2009 Lawyers Campaign for VLSP and Diversity


April 21, 2009 -- San Francisco -- The Bar Association of San Francisco is recognized as a national leader, in large part because of its innovative programs that deliver significant and targeted assistance directly to people who need it.  BASF’s Volunteer Legal Services Program (VLSP) and its Diversity Pipeline programs serve thousands of San Franciscans every year, and the demand is growing sharply.  At the same time, funding sources are stretched:  foundations have less money to distribute, and many law firms’ philanthropic donations have shrunk.

The BASF Foundation, which oversees funding of these programs, is determined to meet the increased demand for services by raising more money for its mission.  The Foundation has launched the 2009 Lawyers Campaign for VLSP and Diversity, and is seeking to raise $250,000 in tax-deductible donations from individual lawyers over the next few months. Board members from BASF, the Foundation and VLSP, along with other volunteer solicitors, will contact potential donors and encourage more lawyers than ever before to make individual donations to support this critical work.

Merri A. Baldwin, a Foundation board member and a partner at Chapman Popik & White LLP, has been appointed chair of the campaign.  “BASF has had very generous individual donors in the past, and that support has been instrumental. But we are facing a new landscape, and we need more individual donors than ever to step forward and help,” she says.  “We as lawyers understand the need for access to representation and assistance, and the link between those resources and achieving justice.  Supporting VLSP and the Diversity Pipeline programs is nothing less than an investment in fairness and equality.”

BASF President Russell Roeca, Roeca Haas Hager LLP, wholeheartedly supports the campaign, “VLSP and the Diversity Pipeline programs, including School-To-College and Law Academy, help change lives, create opportunities that otherwise don’t exist and provide resources and support to people who are often underserved in our community.  We all need to do whatever we can to keep these programs vibrant and alive.”

All donors will be publicly acknowledged by BASF and eligible for donor benefits.  To donate, contact Sue Cox, BASF Foundation Development Director, at, or 415-782-9000 x8704.  You may also make a gift online at


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:

Ann Murphy, Director of Communications & Public Relations
(415) 782-9000 x8792

For general communications inquiries:

Sayre Happich, Assistant Director of Communications & Public Relations
(415) 782-9000 x8104