News Release

Texas Access to Justice Foundation 
November 1, 2012

Carol M. Barger Appointed to the Texas Access to Justice Foundation Board of Directors

AUSTIN, Texas -- The State Bar of Texas Board of Directors recently appointed Carol Barger of Dallas, lawyer and rancher, to the board of directors of the Texas Access to Justice Foundation. As a board member, Barger will assist the Foundation in identifying and increasing funding options to meet the civil legal needs of low-income Texans. She will serve a three-year term.

Barger practiced law for more than 30 years and succeeded in trail blazing federal and state litigation and legislation. She began her legal career in Dallas with legal services programs, practiced in Ft. Worth, and in 1977 she opened the East Texas Legal Services office in Longview.

“We are pleased to have Ms. Barger join us as we work to ensure access to justice for all Texans,” Richard L. “Dick” Tate, chair of the Texas Access to Justice Foundation, said. “Her experience as the first woman lobbyist engaged in business issues affecting low- to moderate-income families will be invaluable as we seek additional funding for civil legal aid.”

In Austin, Barger opened the Southwest regional office of Consumers Union for advocacy on behalf of low- and moderate-income families and community-organizing groups. Her work centered on essential economic issues, such as the rates and practices of electric, telephone, banking and insurance companies. On behalf of Consumers Union, Barger particpated in public policy debates with the Texas legislature.

Barger is active in organizations dedicated to empowering families on issues of social and economic justice including the Texas Organizing Project Education Fund, Women Donors Network and Annie’s List.

The Supreme Court of Texas created the Texas Access to Justice Foundation in 1984 to provide funding for the civil legal needs of poor and low-income Texans. The Foundation annually awards grants to approximately 40 nonprofit legal aid organizations throughout the state that help struggling Texans in matters involving foreclosures, employment, domestic violence and family law issues. In addition to the Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA), the Foundation collects and administers funding from Basic Civil Legal Services (filing fees, fees assessed to out-of-state attorneys practicing in Texas, and other public funding), crime victims’ funds and private donations. 

The Texas Access to Justice Foundation is the largest state-based funding source for civil legal aid in Texas, and has awarded more than $300 million since its inception. The Foundation board of directors consists of 13 attorney and public members, seven of whom are appointed by the Supreme Court of Texas and six by the State Bar of Texas.


The Texas Access to Justice Foundation (, created by the Supreme Court of Texas in 1984, is the leading state-based funding source for the provision of civil legal aid in Texas. The organization is committed to the vision that all Texans will have equal access to justice, regardless of their income. The Foundation administers a variety of funding sources, which are earmarked to assist nonprofit organizations in providing legal aid to approximately 100,000 Texans each year.


Contact: Kimberly Schmitt
512-320-0099, ext. 104


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