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 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:

Upcoming CLE Programs

NACDL's 16th Annual Making Sense of Science: Forensic Science & the Law Seminar. April 27-29, 2023. Paris Hotel, Las Vegas, NV.

Don’t miss this great opportunity for a no-nonsense, national networking CLE featuring the leading faculty in their respective fields. Register today!

NACDL's 6th Annual Seminar Race Matters VI: The Intersection of Race in the Criminal Legal System. May 10-12, 2023. Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza Hotel, Cincinnati, OH.

Race affects what happens in every criminal case, beginning with the initial police encounter on the street and the media attention, to pre-trial litigation, and throughout a trial. Register today!

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Featured Products

2023 Albert J. Krieger Annual Meeting of the NACDL. Cross-A-Palooza: Techniques for Winning with Effective Cross-Examination. August 2-5, 2023 at Swissotel Chicago, Chicago, IL. #NACDLAnnual

Our expert faculty will guide you through the potentially dangerous scenarios and obstacles of cross-examination, and give you the skills to avoid them. Register today!

NACDL's 25th Annual Making the Case for Life: Investigation, Mitigation & Voir Dire in Capital Cases. August 23-25, 2023 at Harrah's Hotel, Las Vegas, NV. #NACDLCaseforLife

Participants will hear cutting-edge presentations regarding pretrial investigations, capital jury selection, new perspectives on discovering the story of the client and mitigation evidence. Register today!