OneJustice Blog

Bring life-changing legal help to Californians in need.

A serial legal services entrepreneur

Join us as we celebrate Claire Solot

For her work advancing justice and bringing training to legal services leaders

Claire Solot, Managing Director of Bigglesworth Family Foundation, head shotEvery year, the OneJustice network gathers at our Opening Doors to Justice event to celebrate three individuals whose outstanding accomplishments have truly moved the needle on legal services, pro bono, and access to justice. Won’t you join us this year on:

Thursday, June 25th 

6-9 pm

Julia Morgan Ballroom (downtown SF)

*Tickets and auction items are now available

We are so excited to be honoring Claire Solot, Managing Director of Bigglesworth Family Foundation, this summer. In 2009, Claire approached OneJustice with the idea for a comprehensive nonprofit management training for legal services leaders, and the result of that conversation – the Executive Fellowship – is now in its 5th year and next month will graduate the 100th Fellow. Please welcome our first honoree, Claire Solot!

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Claire, we can’t wait to honor you on June 25th! Please tell us, why have you committed your time and energy to working on increasing access to justice? 

Twenty-five years ago as a law student extern in the Family Law Department of the San Francisco Superior Court, I had the opportunity to see first hand both the value of and need for civil legal services.  Following my career as a litigator, I joined the philanthropic sector in 2000.  While working on a “safety net” grants portfolio, I started to wonder why legal services were not regularly included in this category.  As a result in 2008, we launched our first legal services grants portfolio.  Working with these grantees for the past eight years, I am more convinced than ever that civil legal aid is a critical part of the solution to breaking the cycle of poverty.

From working on these issues, what is one particularly rewarding experience you have encountered? 

Bringing together the OneJustice Fellows Advisory Board in 2009 to start vetting the need for a training program for legal services leaders was an amazing experience.  In a matter of months, we were able to assemble a “dream team” of diverse leaders, which included: legal aid executive directors, law firm partners, pro bono coordinators, state bar representatives, a non-profit consultant and a funder.  In less than 9 months, we went from a mere concept to a fully operating program.

What is your favorite part of being a part of the Executive Fellowship?

Every time I hear a Fellow share the value of the program, I get shivers.  It is amazing to know that by creating and supporting this program, we not only help these individuals in their roles, we help the organizations they work for and the communities they serve.  As we graduate our 100th Fellow, I know we have developed an important resource for the legal aid community. As we field requests from alumni, law students and out of state practitioners for more offerings, I know that the current Fellows program is just the first piece of this puzzle.

You really are building a powerful civil justice puzzle. Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?

Perhaps I am a serial “non-profit program legal service entrepreneur,” as last fall I assembled a new team comprised of funders from a wide variety of sectors, including: community foundations, private foundations, law firms, crowd-source funders, government and individuals.  Together, we have launched the Bay Area Legal Services Funders Network.

Thank you, Claire, for your dedication to excellence, and your outstanding contributions to ensuring justice for those in need! We are honored to partner with you, and we are thrilled to be recognizing your achievements this summer! 

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About the OneJustice Executive Fellowship: OneJustice trains current executives and the next generation of nonprofit leaders through our management training program. OneJustice’s Executive Fellowship is a 10-month comprehensive program that brings legal aid leaders new business skills.

3 responses to “A serial legal services entrepreneur

  1. Pingback: Have you met this consultant, educator, and philanthropist? | OneJustice Blog

  2. Pingback: Congratulations Executive Fellows | OneJustice Blog

  3. Pingback: Did you hear about what happened last Thursday? | OneJustice Blog

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