Who We Are
The District of Columbia Bar is the second largest unified bar association in the United States. The D.C. Bar’s core functions, supported by member dues, are the registration of lawyers, operation of a lawyer disciplinary system, maintenance of a Clients’ Security Fund, and certain other administrative operations. Many of the important educational and public service programs carried out by the Bar are made possible by voluntary contributions, user fees, and other nondues sources of income.
The Bar is governed by a Board of Governors composed of 20 lawyers selected by the active membership and three members of the public appointed by the Bar itself as nonvoting members.
Created by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals in 1972, the precipitating force for the Bar’s creation was the legal community’s desire to have a single organization that could uphold the ethical standards and Rules of Professional Conduct.
Aid the courts in carrying on and improving the administration of justice.
Promote access to justice and enhance the delivery of legal services to those in need.
Foster and maintain high ideals of integrity, learning, competence in public service, and high standards of conduct.
Safeguard the professional interests of the members of the Bar.
Encourage and support the activities of voluntary bar associations.
Provide a forum for and publish information about the practice of law, the science of jurisprudence and law reform, and the relationship of the Bar to the public.
Carry on a continuing program of legal research and education.
See a list of the D.C. Bar's past presidents.
Our Core Purpose
To enhance access to justice, improve the legal system, and empower lawyers to achieve excellence.
• Access to Justice: D.C. Bar maintains leadership in developing and implementing innovative programs and strategies to enhance the delivery of legal services.
• Positioning of the D.C. Bar: D.C. Bar is known for its national and distinguished membership, depth and breadth of its offerings, and commitment to public service.
• Professional Integrity and Conduct: The D.C. Bar offers programs and services that enhance professional integrity and conduct.
• Technological Engagement and Communications: The D.C. Bar and its members regularly engage through multiple channels and members are actively communicating with one another through Bar-facilitated technology tools.
• Educational Programs and Resources: The D.C. Bar provides high quality educational programs and resources online and on-demand.
• D.C. Bar Sections: The D.C. Bar’s sections are recognized as an integral part of the Bar, providing substantial value to members through professional development and career enhancement activities, and are viewed as a national model of excellence.
• Financial Stability: The D.C. Bar has the ability to fund new initiatives articulated in the strategic plan.