Celebrating 20 Years of Building Stronger Communities with Civil Legal Aid Programs

(CHICAGO) The Illinois Equal Justice Foundation (IEJF), the not-for-profit entity responsible for distributing, monitoring and advocating for the state appropriation for civil legal aid for marginalized Illinoisans, proudly announces the newest members of its Board of Directors:

Shanin Farmer, Attorney at Law (Chicago)
Faiq Mihlar of Heavner, Beyers & Mihlar, LLC (Decatur)
Harold (Hal) Oakley of Schmiedeskamp Robertson Neu & Mitchell LLP (Quincy)

Additionally, the following people were elected to leadership: Lauren Meachum, President; Kendric Cobb, Vice President; Keith Emmons, Treasurer and Dorothy Capers, Secretary.

The IEJF was founded in 1999 with the passage of the Illinois Equal Justice Act, which created a state appropriation for civil legal aid. The Board was constituted in 2000 and the IEJF celebrates its 20th anniversary this year.

The Illinois Equal Justice Foundation strives to increase access to the civil justice system for vulnerable Illinoisans by leveraging state dollars to fund legal aid services across the state. The IEJF administers and advocates for the state appropriation for civil legal aid. By funding civil legal aid programs across the state, the IEJF helps ensure that all residents, regardless of income or race, have equal access to the justice system for urgent, life-changing matter like domestic violence, foreclosure and financial exploitation. Since its first grant cycle in 2001, the IEJF has awarded over $25.9 million in grants to nonprofit legal aid providers serving the critical legal needs of approximately 579,000 vulnerable Illinoisans. These programs build stronger communities and a stronger Illinois.

The IEJF also directs the Illinois Armed Forces Legal Aid Network (IL-AFLAN) and New Leaf Illinois, both funded through additional state appropriations. New Leaf Illinois, a cannabis expungement resource, will launch later this fall.

To learn more about the Illinois Equal Justice Foundation, please visit https://iejf.org or contact Leslie Corbett at 312-938-2381 or lcorbett@iejf.org.

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