Posted on: August 9, 2017
Equal access to justice is a founding principle of our country. Inspired by this principle, PILI’s founders in 1977 called upon law students to serve low-income and underrepresented people with legal needs in Illinois. Forty years ago, our first 12 PILI Law Student Interns answered this call by providing clients at four Chicago public interest law organizations with 4,800 hours of service and demonstrated the difference the legal community can make in keeping families and communities housed, fed, healthy and safe.
PILI has grown tremendously since those early years. Throughout the current fiscal year, we have placed 60 Law Student Interns at 27 public interest law organizations across Illinois. Seventy incoming associates at Illinois law firms are participating in our Graduate Fellowship Program at one of 60 public interest law organizations. Combined, these PILI Interns and Fellows will give 41,800 hours of service to those in need. Our Alumni Network boasts nearly 4,000 past Interns and Fellows. Our Pro Bono Initiative Program has made huge strides in expanding pro bono and engaging new volunteers across Illinois.
PILI stands at the forefront for the cause of a lifelong commitment to public interest law and pro bono service. Since its founding, PILI has functioned as a gateway through which law students can take their first steps into helping those in need. We have also evolved into a hub for law students and attorneys to receive training, mentorship and community support that are critical to integrating pro bono and public service into their legal careers. You have made PILI’s growth over the last 40 years possible, and together we have raised the standard for what it means to serve the public interest as a member of the Illinois legal community.
By giving to PILI, you touch the lives of PILI’s Interns, Fellows, Alumni, and all those who are served by our PILI community. Celebrate our landmark anniversary with us, and make a statement that you believe in PILI’s mission and support our work to create a culture of service in the legal profession.