SUPPORT FOR ORGANIZATION
SEEKING CJAD FUNDING

Opinion No. 214 (1997)


QUESTION: May a judge write a letter of support for a non-profit organization pertaining to the organization's seeking CJAD funding: if the letter deals only with the judge's knowledge of the services the organization provides in the community and does not itself solicit funds?

ANSWER: Yes. Canon 4(C)(2) states that a judge "shall not solicit funds for any educational, religious, charitable, fraternal or civic organization..." If the letter were restricted to a recitation of the services the organization provides in the community, based on the judge's knowledge, and does not solicit funds, there would be no violation even if the net effect of the letter would be to make more likely the organization's receiving the funds, if the other requirements of Canon 4 were met. In this context, a judge could very well be in a unique position to provide such information.

QUESTION: May a judge serve as a member of an advisory board of an organization which is partly funded by government and partly by private funding?

ANSWER: Yes. Canon 4(C)(2) states that a judge "may be listed as an officer, director, delegate or trustee of (any educational, religious, charitable, fraternal, or civic organization)."