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Community Law Center Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Community & Neighborhood Development, Crime & Law, Economic Development, Legal Services, Nonprofit Management

Mission: Community Law Center, a nonprofit law firm, provides legal services to community and nonprofit organizations throughout Maryland to promote stronger nonprofits and more vibrant neighborhoods.

Results: Since our founding over 30 years ago, Community Law Center has provided countless hours of free legal services to organizations working to make positive change. Community Law Center has a constant influx of clients. We receive dozens of inquiries each week. With three staff attorneys and over 500 volunteer attorneys, Community Law Center provides representation to neighborhoods and nonprofits for all of their legal needs that touch every aspect of needed services on our communities.

Target demographics: Community Law Center serves nonprofit organizations and neighborhood and community groups. CLC represents only organizational clients in Maryland.

Geographic areas served: State of Maryland

Programs: The mission of Community Law Center is to provide legal services to community and nonprofit organizations throughout Maryland to promote stronger nonprofits and more vibrant neighborhoods. No other organization provides the services we offer. Contributions to Community Law Center spread wide across the nonprofit landscape and go deep into the grassroots of our communities as we assist with the most basic and fundamental operations as well as the most complicated projects and initiatives. Each year, staff and volunteer attorneys through Community Law Center deliver over 10,000 billable hours of free legal services valued at over $2,000,000. In addition to direct legal services for nonprofits of all types, our work has a special focus on low-income neighborhoods in Baltimore City. We help to build the social and economic strength of low-income communities that lack the financial resources to pay for private legal representation. Our attorneys teach people to come together to take charge of their neighborhoods, stand up for what they need, and work together to accomplish their goals. The lawyers at Community Law Center take communities as their clients to serve their legal needs, but also to foster the growth of their voice as a community. Community Law Center was founded in 1986 by a group of lawyers and community organizers who saw the need for residents in Baltimore City to band together and advocate effectively for their neighborhoods. Community Law Center is Maryland’s only legal services organization dedicated solely to strengthening neighborhoods and the nonprofit sector. We seek partnerships with nonprofits, businesses, law enforcement, educators, social workers, and governmental agencies to realize each client’s strategic goals. In addition to direct legal representation, Community Law Center develops self-help publications, workshops, and training programs for our pro bono attorneys, clients, and community leaders. Community Law Center is also an advocate for giving Baltimore’s low-income neighborhoods a voice in many policy and regulatory, and administrative decision-making forums.

Community Stories

15 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Linda Richard R.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have been following the The Community Law Center for at least 10 years. I am impressed and thankful that such a dedicated group of professionals are helping the Baltimore community and nonprofit organizations. Keep up the good work!!

--Linda Ryan

Board Member

Rating: 5

Community Law Center is THE place to get your neighborhood non-profit started and keep it going generation-to-generation!

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

This is a first-class organization that gets results.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Community Law Center is a tremendous resource for local organizations looking to create meaningful change for their communities. The Community Law Center genuinely cares about its clients and the causes that inspire them.

Board Member

Rating: 5

This organization is invaluable to community non-profits here in Baltimore!

Bill K.1

Board Member

Rating: 5

Prior to becoming a Board member, I was a community leader in Downtown Baltimore. The CLC helped me and my team found a community association (from start to finish). Their knowledgeable team can't be beat!

Dominic W.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I've been a board member for 3 years. In that time, I've consistently been impressed by the CLC; its mission, its leadership and its phenomenal staff are all equal components in its consistent success. The highlight of my year is our annual city-wide bus tour of representative clients. Again and again, I'm blown away by how much CLC has helped community groups throughout Baltimore be it a greening project or the abatement of a nuisance. I'm proud to be a small part of such a worthwhile organization.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am an attorney in private practice who takes cases from the CLC on a pro bono basis. I am proud to work with such a great organization to provide much needed legal services to community associations.

Dave22

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Community Law Center recently helped a neighborhood organization in Baltimore City to reclaim an abandoned city park and to secure follow -through of promised funding for a basketball court and playground equipment. Neighborhood residents strongly supported the project and are delighted. Community Law Center delivers significant legal help to many area non-profits in a very cost effective way.

1 Danielle15

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Community Law Center provides a unique service in the Baltimore region. The Community Law Center represents organizationals (not individuals) on a reduced fee or pro bono basis, providing legal services on a wide range of legal issues through its staff attorneys and through a large network of volunteer attorneys. As the Board Chair, I am well positioned to evaluate how the organization is run and believe it to be extremely efficient. Money donated to the Community Law Center is well spent and will directly impact the organization's programs and help its clients.

robertjstrupp

Board Member

Rating: 5

Community Law Center provides legal assistance to non-profit community organizations throughout Maryland. The passion and commitment of Community Law Center staff and its clients turns houses into homes, empty lots into gardens and playgrounds and addresses into communities.

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Book Thing was able to move from renting a 950 sf. basement to buying a 7000 sf. warehouse. What would've cost days of research and thousands of dollars ended up costing $100(?) and a few hours. The CLC lets nonprofits better fulfill their missions by providing the expertise that so few grassroots organizations have.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a retired attorney. For 40 years I represented persons and organizations that could not afford to employ an attorney. I have known the Community Law Center from its creation by Anne Blumenberg almost 30 years ago. It was and is unique; representing organizations rather than individuals. The CLC led the battle against drugs and liquor outlets in poor neighborhoods, CLC marshaled forces to restrict advertising of alcohol in residential neighborhoods, CLC led the battle in courts and the legislature to remove lead paint from homes and created the now nationally renowned Coalition to End Childhood Lead Poisoning. Most recently the CLC helped to create an ngo to aid juvenile offenders for whom I am an advisory board member. Their publications taught the novice executive director and board members how to form and govern an ngo. I have been involved with the CLC as a board member, as a mentor of new attorneys and as a client. It is a very good law office with excellent administration and very good lawyers. Lawyers want to work at and with the CLC. It has no trouble recruiting accomplished attorneys in private practice to accept cases without charging a fee. The CLC is a respected voice in the community, the City Council and the State Legislature. Anne Blumenberg has retired. Kristine Dunkerton has succeeded her. The staff and board have increased and strengthened.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a fourth generation Baltimorean, and I know that Community Law Center's contributions to my City over the past 25 years have been vital to every community revitalization effort in that time. I have worked at the Community Law Center for the past six years, and am amazed at the dedication of the staff attorneys to the communities they serve. Every neighborhood needs the services Community Law Center provides!

Donor

Rating: 5

As an annual donor to Community Law Center, I have been impressed to witness the positive impact they have on Baltimore's neighborhoods as well as nonprofits all over Maryland. On many occasions, if it were not for Community Law Center, neighborhoods would be unrepresented and not have the support necessary to follow through with the improvements and initiatives they have undertaken. It is so important for communities to have a strong advocate in Community Law Center, especially when other private and governmental resources are abandoning those that need it most.