D.C. Law Students In Court Celebrates Fifty Years of Service and New Name

Washington DC, August 14, 2019 – Founded in 1969 to address the almost total lack of legal representation of clients in the Small Claims Branch of the D.C. Superior Court, Law Students in Court today has been rebranded as Rising for Justice – a recognition of the scope and impact of the organization’s mission. 

Launched by six D.C. area law schools, Rising for Justice is today a nationally recognized leader at training social justice advocates and representing clients in grave legal jeopardy.  Among the signature achievements of the organization over the past 50 years:

  • Excellence in Teaching – A staff of eight full-time Supervising Attorneys teach, supervise and lead law students in a clinical program designed to meet American Bar Association standards for clinical training. And while started originally to focus just on civil matters, Rising for Justice has expanded to include a Criminal Defense Clinic, offering law students a broader array of opportunities for real world legal training.  
  • Expanded Client Representation – Physically located in the D.C. Superior Court, Rising for Justice’s Eviction Defense Service (EDS) is the only legal provider that is open every hour that the Court is open, and takes on clients regardless of their situation. Through EDS and Rising for Justice’s legal clinical programs, law students, supervising attorneys and staff attorneys provide representation to more than 4000 clients each year.
  • Innovations in Justice and Equity – Rising for Justice has a legacy of innovation, developing groundbreaking programs around expungement and immigration, launching a Civil Protection Order Project to represent respondents in civil protection order cases, and pioneering the integration of social work students with clinical legal education.
  • Organizational Stability – over the past decade, Rising for Justice has grown in size and impact, diversified revenue by tapping into philanthropic sources, and built a professional staff of 30 full time employees. The Rising for Justice annual gala, Celebration of Service, has grown to be a signature event, raising revenue for the program and recognizing leaders in the greater D.C. legal community.

“Our staff, students, interns, Board, law school partners and funders are driven to help individuals rise to the justice they deserve, and in so doing, help our entire community rise to the standard of justice for all,” said Moses Cook, Executive Director of Rising for Justice.  “Our new name reflects the mission and passion that has driven our organization for the past fifty years, and will drive us into the future.” 

About Rising for Justice

Since 1969, Rising for Justice has been leveraging the collective forces of students and experienced advocates to achieve justice for all.  To prevent injustices today, Rising for Justice represents D.C. residents who are in grave legal jeopardy.  To build a better tomorrow, Rising for Justice trains law students to be life-long advocates for justice.  And to ensure justice always, Rising for Justice innovates sustainable solutions to problems of justice and equity.  www.risingforjustice.org