January 23, 2015: The New York Bar Foundation Recognized for Governance and Leadership
The New York Bar Foundation has been selected by VCG Governance Matters as one of five finalists for the Brooke W. Mahoney Award for Outstanding Board Leadership. The Foundation competed with non-profit organizations of all sizes from the tri-state communities of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut for the award.
“We are delighted to have been named one of the best governed foundations in the tri-state area,” states Foundation Board President Cristine Cioffi of Niskayuna (Cioffi • Slezak • Wildgrube). “This recognition demonstrates that The Foundation’s grant making to worthy law-related projects across the state is managed, run, structured and conducts business in an honest, straightforward, efficient and cost-effective way. It recognizes that we treat donor money carefully and respectfully, and invest and spend it wisely. The leadership works hard at governance and supporting the responsible management of the organization, so that we may do the greatest good with our grants.”
The New York Bar Foundation is the charitable and philanthropic entity of the New York State Bar Association. Founded in 1950, The Foundation is dedicated to aiding educational, direct legal services, and charitable projects aimed at meeting the law-related needs of the public and the profession. Example beneficiaries include Lawyers for Children, Lifespan of Greater Rochester, Inc., My Sisters’ Place, Inc., and Partnership for the Homeless.
Funding for the grants comes from contributions to The Foundation by lawyers, law firms, corporations, and others. One hundred percent of their donations are re-granted to charitable projects, which have been carefully vetted by the board.
The Foundation has presented over $4.5 million in grants over the past seven years across New York State to nonprofit organizations that provide legal services to those in need. Known for its nimble responses to pressing social problems, the Foundation also initiated and rapidly turned around disaster relief funding for urgent legal services during and Superstorm Sandy and the recent mortgage foreclosure crisis.
“In an era of enhanced attention to the quality of nonprofit governance and leadership, this announcement reaffirms the high quality of our board and the work of The Foundation,” states Chair of the Foundation’s Governance Committee Robert L. Haig of New York City (Kelley Drye and Warren).
President of the New York State Bar Association and former board member of The Foundation, Glenn Lau-Kee states, “Being recognized for the absolute core of what a foundation does—taking care of people’s money efficiently and spending it responsibly—demonstrates that The New York Bar Foundation is a first-rate nonprofit organization. As one of the five finalists for this award, The Foundation is recognized for its integrity and adherence to fiduciary duties.”
The Foundation conducted an intensive strategic planning process in 2014 and has committed to doubling its grant making and visibility over the next three years. “This recognition will assist in our efforts to double our grant making, helping worthwhile law-related programs serve those in need,” continues Cioffi.
Contact: Deborah Auspelmyer
Director of Development and Administration