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 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!

NACDL & NCDD's 27th Annual DWI Means Defend with Ingenuity(R) Seminar: Winners Find a Way to Victory. September 20-23, 2023 at Planet Hollywood Hotel in Las Vegas, NV

If you are serious about being an effective DUI defense advocate, or if you're considering adding DUI defenses to your firms portfolio, you need to know the latest scientific and legal strategies to optimize your success at trial. The DUI seminar is held in the mornings only in conjunction with the drug seminar. Register today!

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Featured Products

NACDL's 16th Annual Seminar Defending Modern Drug Cases. September 20-23, 2023 at Planet Hollywood Hotel in Las Vegas, NV

As the impact of the pandemic continues to fade, criminal drug trials are picking up once again, so come learn novel techniques and practices from the nation's leading experts. The Drug Seminar is held in the afternoons only in conjunction with the DWI seminar. Register today!

NACDL's 14th Annual Defending Sex Cases Seminar: Zealous Advocacy in Sexual Assault & Child Victims Cases. Las Vegas, NV Planet Hollywood Hotel & Casino, November 15-17, 2023.

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. Register today!