Legal Aid was saddened to learn today of the passing of Pro Bono Institute founder Esther F. Lardent. Established by Esther in 1996, the Pro Bono Institute (PBI) is a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization mandated to explore and identify new approaches to and resources for the provision of legal services to the poor, disadvantaged, and other individuals or groups unable to secure legal assistance to address critical problems.
Under Esther’s visionary leadership, PBI emerged as a leading voice in the cause of equal access to justice and an important agent in the support and enhancement of pro bono legal services. Today, PBI works with hundreds of major law firms, in-house corporate legal departments, and public interest organizations in the U.S. and around the world to continually expand, improve, and enrich pro bono service.
Our thoughts are with Esther’s family, friends, and the many colleagues she inspired through her extraordinary work on behalf of access to justice.