During the annual grants meeting of the Georgia Bar Foundation earlier this month, Statesboro attorney Jimmy Franklin was honored for his two years of service as Bar president and $472,274 was awarded in grants to Atlanta Legal Aid and Georgia Legal Services.
"Over the last few years, revenues for the Georgia Bar Foundation have still not rebounded from what they were before the Great Recession began," Franklin said. "So, after a lot of serious discussion at our meeting, we awarded $153,489 to Atlanta Legal Aid and $318,785 to Georgia Legal Services. It was a difficult meeting because all of our other applicants are worthy organizations and are well managed. Deciding how to distribute our limited funds was really difficult."
Funds available for grant awards were bolstered this year by "pro hac vice" fees made available to the Georgia Bar Foundation by Georgia's Superior courts and State courts as well as from the Supreme Court of Georgia and the Georgia Court of Appeals. Pro hac vice fees are paid by out-of-state lawyers for the right to appear in Georgia courts. These new funds totaled $211,600, an important new source of revenues.
At the close of the meeting, in appreciation for his leadership and service to the Foundation, Franklin received an original crystal sculpture along with a gift certificate for a long weekend at the Ritz-Carlton.
"Thank you for all your hard work and extraordinary leadership during these challenging, last two years," said Hon. Robert W. Chasteen, Superior Court judge in the Cordele Circuit and in-coming president of the Georgia Bar Foundation. "We love you, Jimmy!"
Since it began making grants in 1986, the Georgia Bar Foundation has awarded more than $94 million in grants to 166 different law-related organizations. It is the charitable arm of the Supreme Court of Georgia, and its primary focus is supporting civil indigent legal services.