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Esther F. Lardent Fund for Innovation in Pro Bono


Established by Pro Bono Institute’s Board of Directors in 2015, the Esther F. Lardent Fund for Innovation in Pro Bono (EFL Fund) has been created to support new and innovative pro bono projects designed to close the justice gap. Named in honor of PBI’s founder and first president Esther F. Lardent, the EFL Fund will ensure that Esther’s vision of a society in which everyone receives equal treatment under the law remains strong and that the work to realize that vision through new and innovative initiatives will continue for generations to come. For more information, please email Danny Reed, Director of Development, or call 202.729.6691.

Esther F. Lardent Leadership in Pro Bono Series
In addition to the EFL Fund, PBI launched the Esther F. Lardent Leadership in Pro Bono Series. The series will be comprised of leadership dinners, educational forums, and networking events designed to bring together the legal community to promote innovative and creative dialogue on legal practice and access to justice. Learn more…

Esther Lardent dedicated her 45-year legal career to ensure civil rights and equal access to justice for all. Her innovation in the world of pro bono began with her role as the first director of the Volunteer Lawyers Project of the Boston Bar Association in 1976, which pioneered the concept of organized pro bono projects and was the foundation for what would eventually become PBI in 1996. In two decades as PBI’s President and CEO, Esther’s leadership transformed the landscape of pro bono at large law firms and in-house legal departments.

Esther has earned numerous awards for her service and progressive ideas and projects including being named one of Legal Times’ “90 Greatest Washington Lawyers of the Last 30 Years” (2008) and one of The American Lawyer’s “Top 50 Innovators” (2013). More recently, Esther was recognized with the Western Center on Law & Poverty’s Earl Johnson Equal Justice Award (2015) and The American Lawyer’s Lifetime Achievement Award (2015).

But the true reward is the number of people who have benefited from her steadfast commitment to addressing the access to justice crisis.


Esther F. Lardent Fund for Innovation in Pro Bono
National Leadership Committee

Hilarie Bass
Greenberg Traurig
Hon. Jonathan Lippman
Of Counsel
Latham & Watkins
Ivan K. Fong
Senior Vice President, Legal Affairs and General Counsel
Regina M. Pisa
Chairman Emeritus
Goodwin Procter
Kenneth C. Frazier
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Merck & Co., Inc.
Thomas A. Russo
Elisa D. Garcia
Chief Legal Officer
Macy’s, Inc.
Thomas J. Sabatino, Jr.
Executive Vice President and General Counsel
Aetna Inc.
Gregory B. Jordan
General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.
Robert C. Sheehan
Of Counsel
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom
Stasia Kelly
Managing Partner (Americas)
DLA Piper
David Williams
National Principal, Policy, Government Relations and Citizenship
Deloitte Services LP