Public Defense Scholarships

As a result of generous grant funding, NACDL is able to offer scholarship assistance to public defense attorneys to attend training programs.

As a result of generous grant funding, NACDL is able to offer scholarship assistance to public defense attorneys to attend training programs hosted by NACDL as well as other organizations. Scholarships are awarded in the form of full or partial reimbursement of the registration costs of the program. Limited travel reimbursement stipends may also be awarded to qualifying individuals to help defray the costs of travel and lodging.


Application Scholarship FAQs


Eligibility requirements for a registration and/or travel scholarship: Applicants must:

  • Be a public defender, contract counsel, or private counsel receiving court appointments
  • Demonstrate financial need

Do I need to be a member? You do not need to be a member to receive a scholarship for registration fees, but membership is required at the time of reimbursement for applicants awarded a travel scholarship.

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Supported by NFCJ

The NACDL Foundation for Criminal Justice preserves and promotes the core values of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the American criminal justice system.

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Application Deadline: Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis beginning approxmiately 90 days before the start of the program. Applications received less than three weeks before the program will not be considered.

To Apply: Submit a completed Public Defense Scholarship Application via email to pdtscholarship@nacdl.org with “Scholarship Application” in the subject line, or fax the application to (202) 872-8690, Attn: Public Defense Scholarship. 


Additional information about NACDL's Public Defense Scholarship

Application Scholarship FAQs

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Questions about NACDL's Public Defense Scholarship Program should be directed to: pdtscholarship@nacdl.org


Upcoming CLE Programs

Learn how to gain the upper hand in your next case by understanding the concept of personality as persuasion, how to use improv, and where to find and tell the winning story. This groundbreaking NACDL seminar will teach you how to ethically advocate on behalf of your client with proven communication strategies when relating to witnesses, experts, judges, and prosecutors, and persuading jurors of your theory of defense. Learn more and register today!

Defending charges of sexual assault and child abuse can be daunting — but with the right tools, it doesn’t have to be. Every year, NACDL identifies the hottest topics and most pressing issues when defending these cases, and brings-in nationally-renowned lawyers and experts to help you prepare for battle. Don’t miss this exciting educational opportunity!

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