|PANDEMIC GRANTS REPORT |
The West Virginia Bar Foundation and its Board of Directors were very pleased to serve as the administrator for the tremendously beneficial Law Student Emergency Relief Program that was initiated in all the law schools in the nation by the AccessLex Institute, including our only law school here in West Virginia, the WVU College of Law. After being requested to manage the Program at the WVU College of Law, the Bar Foundation followed the program’s guidelines and the excellent advice provided by AccessLex after receiving the $25,000 grant on June 1, 2020. The Board of Directors implemented a plan to put together an application form and to distribute the form to all rising second and third year law students, as well as 2020 law school graduates, with the efficient assistance of the WVU College of Law. The Bar Foundation Grants Committee reviewed the completed applications and made recommendations to the Board of Directors, with the Board making the final decisions. All this effort was accomplished within approximately six weeks and the grant checks were mailed to the law students/graduates on July 17, 2020. There were 40 completed grant applications received with 38 of them meeting the stated criteria—“The payments are for immediate hardship due to extraordinary circumstances in limited amounts, such as housing or food due to delay of bar exam, loss of employment and other unforeseen reasons.” The other two did not meet the criteria and the applicants were so informed. The total amount of funds requested by the 38 approved grantees was $70,797, with six applicants making large requests totaling $23,077. By removing those six requests, the remaining 32 applicants requested $47,720 or just less than $1,500 each. The Board approved the 38 grants for a total of $26,050 with a maximum grant of $750. The Board donated an additional $1,050 of its own funds to supplement AccessLex’s generous grant of $25,000, which went to each law school across the United States. To demonstrate the positive impact of this extraordinary action to assist our law students/law graduates during the COVID-19 virus pandemic, here are some comments from the grantees: “Times are tough for everyone, yet it is refreshing to know there are kind people in the legal profession willing to help a recent graduate beginning her career as a lawyer” “The grant has helped me tremendously with expenses as I was unable to work the few months leading up to bar preparation.” “Thank you so much for your kindness and generosity during this difficult time.” “Thank you so much for the opportunity to apply for emergency funding. I know it will be a lifesaver for many WVU COL students, myself included.” “Thank you for this opportunity to aid my family and me.” “I first want to thank you for providing an opportunity to apply for assistance in these difficult times.” “Anything would be so helpful right now. Thank you so much for your consideration and for offering this program.” The WV Bar Foundation expresses its deep gratitude to AccessLex Institute for its very successful Law Student Emergency Relief Program and to the WVU College of Law staff members for their superb guidance and assistance.
ROBERT T. GOLDENBERG
Robert T. Goldenberg (Parkersburg) passed away on August 13, 2020. At the age of 96 years, he was the oldest practicing lawyer in the state. After distinguished service in the U.S. Navy during World War II, Bob became a highly recognized leader as a lawyer, within the legal profession and the judicial system, and in many community and statewide endeavors. He served in important positions in both the Executive and Legislative branches of WV state government. For the WV Bar Foundation, he was honored in the inaugural class of Bar Foundation Fellows and was elected to two 3 year terms on the Board of Directors. He is survived by three children, including his son, David, who is an attorney in Parkersburg, six grandchildren and two great grandchildren. All honor to his name. ______________________________________________
U.S. CENSUS-WEST VIRGINIA
At the present time, more than 80% of WV households have responded to the 2020 Census. The U.S. Census Bureau has begun going door to door to visit the remaining addresses, in person. As stated on the Census cover page—-“Results from the 2020 Census will be used to: * Direct billions of dollars in federal funds to local communities for schools, roads, and other public services. * Help your community prepare to meet transportation and emergency readiness needs. * Determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives and your political representation at all levels of government.” It takes less than 15 minutes to complete the census form. Please take the small amount of time and effort to complete your 2020 Census form, if you have not done so already. It’s for your personal benefit, as well as your family, your local community and our state.