Grant Award from American College of Trust and Estate Counsel Foundation to The Commons Law Center to Serve Portland’s African American Community

Basic estate planning can protect families and help dismantle the impacts of racist systems

August 31, 2020

Portland, Oregon                                                                                       

The Commons Law Center is thrilled to announce the receipt of $23,000 in funding from the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel Foundation (ACTEC) for the purpose of leveraging estate planning for communities of color to advance racial justice in Portland, OR.

Funds from ACTEC Foundation will support The Commons Law Center in on-boarding a 2020 law graduate, with priority given to graduates with links to N/NE Portland’s African American communities. The graduate will serve those communities, helping with outreach, expand educational efforts already underway, and providing estate planning services to clients. 

The graduate will also aid in the growth of The Commons’ Homeownership Asset Preservation Program, a partnership with the American Alliance for Homeownership, funded by the City of Portland’s Housing Bureau. The program provides estate planning services to longtime, low-income homeowners in N/NE Portland, as a way to help preserve the homeownership assets of the African American and other low-income communities in the area. The program is one small tool to help dismantle systemic oppression, from Vanport, redlining, the interstate highway, to annexation of land for private and public use.

Jeffrey Thede, ACTEC’s Board President, explains that “The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel Foundation is proud to support the important work of the Commons Law Center to expand estate planning services to the African American community in North and Northeast Portland while growing the pipeline of estate planning lawyers of color. We look forward to their success.”

The Commons Law Center will immediately put these funds to use in advancing racial justice and equity for Portland’s African American communities. 

Contact: Amanda Caffall, Executive Director & Staff Attorney

amanda@thecommonslawcenter.org, 503-850-0811

About the author 

Amanda Caffall

Raised in a small timber town nearby, she grew to love nature and commuting by bicycle in the city. Amanda leads program and partnership development and is a part-time attorney. Hobbies include urbanism, nephews, growing plants, and seeing friends.

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