Lawyers Journal

Sargent Shriver Center acquires Boston's CLAE

The Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law acquired Boston-based Center for Legal Aid Education (CLAE) on Sept. 30. The Shriver Center said the move will enable it to provide broader and deeper support to equal justice lawyers and advocates working on behalf of low-income people.

"By acquiring CLAE, we greatly enhance our ability to train, support and collaborate with frontline legal aid lawyers working for justice in 
disenfranchised communities throughout the country," said Shriver Center 
President John Bouman.

The Shriver Center develops and advances federal, state and local laws and policies to create a more just and equitable society. It also serves as a communications hub and leader for the legal aid community nationally. CLAE provides timely continuing legal education that responds to the legal aid community's distinctive mission and practice. Since 2006, it has provided training and leadership development programs to more than 2,100 advocates in 40 states.

The Shriver Center said the timing is particularly important given the ongoing economic downturn, which has placed financial pressure on legal aid program budgets at a time of growing demand for their services.

"Joining the Shriver Center will enable us to use our resources more effectively and eliminate significant operational redundancies, so that we can expand access to our programs while keeping them affordable," said Ellen Hemley, who was CLAE's executive director and now joins the Shriver Center's senior management team as vice president of training programs. She will oversee national training and leadership development programs in the Shriver Center's Boston office

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