Your Bar Foundation Needs Your Help Today, 1214 RIBJ, 63 RI Bar J., No. 3, Pg. 11

AuthorMichael A. St. Pierre, Esq., President, Rhode Island Bar Foundation.

Your Bar Foundation Needs Your Help Today

Vol. 63 No. 3 Pg. 11

Rhode Island Bar Journal

December, 2014

\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0November, 2014

\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0 Michael A. St. Pierre, Esq., President, Rhode Island Bar Foundation.

\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0The Rhode Island Bar Foundation was created in 1958 to serve as the fundraising and charitable arm of the Rhode Island Bar Association. During the past fiscal year, the Foundation’s Board of Directors and other dedicated volunteers have continued to help the Foundation fulfill its mission to foster and maintain the honor and integrity of the profession of law and to study, improve and facilitate the administration of justice.

\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0For over 30 years, the Rhode Island Bar Foundation has invited members of the Bar who meet certain standards to become Fellows of the Foundation. Fellows are attorneys and judges who have distinguished themselves professionally, who have made a significant monetary contribution to the Foundation, and who have given generously of their time to public service in communities where they live and where they work. At our Annual Meeting in June, I am pleased to report that we welcomed 10 new Fellows. At this time, 339 attorneys are Fellows. It is truly gratifying that many Life Fellows have answered the call during these difficult economic times, as evidenced by the fact that annual donations have increased significantly over the past two years. We also receive annual voluntary contributions from members of the Rhode Island Bar whose generosity is likewise noted.

\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0The Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts (IOLTA) Program continues to face challenges. Since the 2008 recession hit, the falling numbers continue to astound Bar Foundations across the country. This year continued to be a difficult year for funding legal services programs. It is expected that the near zero federal funds short-term interest rate will continue for at least the next year.

\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0\xA0Although we are well below the IOLTA income levels of prior years, IOLTA is still vital to fulfilling the critical need of providing civil legal services to the poor. The Board of Directors is optimistic that the future economic climate will improve, resulting in increased revenue. Under the leadership of Treasurer James Jackson, we have a very strong Finance Committee and...

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