Joseph W. Little Pro Bono Support Fund Challenge

Established by Philip A. (JD 73) and Phyllis S. DeLaney (BDAE 92), the Joseph W. Little Pro Bono Support Fund offsets out-of-pocket expenses incurred by students who volunteer for pro bono work.

“Professor Little has represented indigent clients in many cases of local public interest over the past four decades, frequently paying costs out of his own pocket,” DeLaney said. “When I heard of his pending retirement — and despite the horrible economy for a real estate closing practice attorney such as myself — I decided to start the endowment of a fund to pay costs for the student law clinic’s indigent clients and to fund indigent legal assistance by students in areas impacted by natural disasters to recognize Professor Little’s decades of public service.”

To date, and with the DeLaneys’ founding gift, the endowment has received gifts from UF Law professors Lyrissa Lidsky, Dennis Calfee and from Joe Little himself. Little joined the faculty at UF Law in 1967 and is a widely known legal advocate and expert in torts, local government law, U.S. and state constitutional law and employment legislation. His pro bono ethic is mirrored in the strength of UF Law student advocacy efforts, which fulfill a much-needed community service and contribute to student career development, honing legal skills that increase the value of new graduates to potential employers. The Class of 2010 completed 9,204 pro bono hours, and it is anticipated the fund will increase opportunities for students to serve in these advocacy roles.

“The professor of my fi rst class at UF Law in 1971 was Joe Little and I learned what a law professor was and what was expected of me in the fi rst 15 minutes of the class. All of us who took classes with Professor Little will remember that he does not waste words,” DeLaney said. “I challenge you, his former students, to contribute to the endowment in recognition of Professor Little’s impact on your career, so that a sufficient corpus will be built up to properly fund the needs of UF Law’s indigent clients.”

To make a contribution to the Little fund, contact the Office of Development and Alumni Affairs at (352) 273-0640.