In 1978, a group of Stanford law students and alumni, including Karen Chapman (JD ’79) and Mark Chavez (JD ’79), created the Stanford Public Interest Law Foundation (SPILF). Through this student group, the Stanford community strives to support groups that lack adequate legal representation.  You may view the SPILF informational brochure here.

Our Mission Statement:

 The Stanford Public Interest Law Foundation is dedicated to creating and supporting opportunities for the Public Interest Community to engage in innovative public interest work. Led entirely by students, SPILF raises money to provide financial support to members of the Stanford Law community working to further the public interest. SPILF’s goals are to:

  1. Bring legal services to those groups that would otherwise lack access to adequate legal representation;
  2. Strengthen the network of students and alumni involved with public interest;
  3. Provide training and support to students interested in pursuing public interest work at Stanford Law School and after graduation; and,
  4. Increase participation in and the visibility of public interest initiatives at Stanford.

In its earlier years, SPILF provided grant aid to Stanford law students who find summer employment with public interest groups. Many of these jobs pay little, if at all, and SPILF helped students support themselves while they explored fields outside of the more lucrative private sector.

In recent years, Stanford Law School has expanded its summer grant program and now fully funds the program for public interest students. As a result, SPILF now turns greater attention to its founding mission of creating new and innovative opportunities for law students and legal professionals; for the past several years, SPILF’s funds have supported public interest fellowships for recent Stanford Law graduates, Stanford-affiliated public interest initiatives, and outside project grants to non-profit organizations engaged in public interest legal work. This year, SPILF will be awarding two year-long public interest fellowships.

Each year, student members raise all SPILF funds through the Annual “Bid for Justice” Benefit Auction, Hotel Voucher pledges, alumni and faculty donations, and law firm contributions.

The 2015-2016 SPILF Student Board

  • Co-Presidents: Bethany Bengfort & Neil Raina
  • Treasurers: Minh Nguyen-Dang & Zoe Friedland
  • Vice Presidents of Auction: Isaiah Deporto & Natalie Karl
  • Vice Presidents of Grants: Alex Twinem
  • Vice Presidents of Student Initiatives: Nayha Arora & Katie McKeon
  • Vice Presidents of Development: Dana Rehnquist & Elizabeth Costello
  • Web Development: Yeseung Jang

The 2016 Bid for Justice Auction Board:

  • Co-Chairs: Karen Ding & Camille Peeples
  • Alumni: Joseph Aronsohn
  • Local Business: Fiona Theobald & Andrea Donahue
  • Food & Wine: Elena Mercado & Jolie Huang
  • Entertainment: Clare Riva & Michael Halper
  • Faculty: Savannah Fletcher & Jonathan Berry-Smith
  • Firms: Omeed Anvar & Leonardo Villalobos
  • Students & Social: Lauren Gorodetsky
  • Website: Daniel Chao
  • Marketing: Sarah Gilmartin
  • Inventory: Rachel Boochever
  • Venue: Sarah Catherine Perot & Emily Doyle
  • Management: Chuck Roberts