Jon Strauss leads Hennepin County Bar to Record-Breaking Year in Grant Awards


Minneapolis: — The Hennepin County Bar Foundation closed its 2013–14 fiscal year with a celebrative air for its record-breaking year under the direction of outgoing President Jonathan A. Strauss.  The foundation provided a record amount in grant awards by finalizing over $123,000 in regular grants to 21 local law-related agencies and projects. During the year the board also distributed an additional $100,000 in special grants—specifically focused on women’s concerns—made possible by cy pres funding. 

A listing of regular cycle grant recipients and the special grants announced earlier in the year is included below. These agencies and law-related programs help further the foundation’s mission: Promoting equal access to justice for the people of Hennepin County.

At the close of its annual meeting, Strauss passed the leadership mantel to Girard Miller (Stinson Leonard Street), and Miller in turn presented a plaque of recognition to Strauss for his year of presidential leadership. In addition, the annual meeting looked forward by electing new board members and officers, presented awards for service, and committed to a new approach to future grant making. 

Other officers for the coming year include: Vice-President Sharna A. Wahlgren; Secretary Katherine Bruce (U.S. District Court – District of Minnesota); and Treasurer Kati Mohammad-Zadeh (University of Minnesota Law School). Jonathan Strauss (Sapientia Law Group) remains an officer as the immediate past president. 

The Hennepin Country Bar Foundation is the charitable arm of the Hennepin County Bar Association.  Funds for annual grants come from individual member attorneys and through two key fund-raising events: the annual Bar Benefit held in March and a Charity Golf Classic held in August. Under Strauss’ leadership, record sums were raised in both events this year from members, law firms, sponsors, and other generous individuals.

2013–2014 Grants by the Hennepin County Bar Foundation 

Regular cycle grant recipients:
Total of $123,000

Battered Women’s Legal Advocacy Project
Children’s Law Center of Minnesota
Civil Society
Council on Americans-Islamic Relations, Minnesota (CAIR-MN)
Division of Indian Work
HCBA Lawyer Referral & Information Service (LRIS) Language Line
Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers
Legal Rights Center
Loan Repayment Assistance Program of Minnesota
Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans
Minnesota Council on Crime and Justice
Neighborhood Involvement Program
Peace and Hope International (PHI)
Restorative Justice Community Action
Seward Longfellow Restorative Justice Partnership
Somali Benadiri
The Family Partnership
Volunteer Lawyers Network

Cy pres-funded grants designated to improve the lives of women in Hennepin County
Total of $100,000

Breaking Free, Inc. Cornerstone Advocacy Service Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women