The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. Inc. (“LDF”) invites rising third-year law students, judicial clerks, and other recent law school graduates to apply for LDF sponsorship for public interest fellowship projects to begin in Fall 2025.  Sponsorship will enable the applicant to submit proposals for consideration to the Skadden Fellowship Foundation, Equal Justice Works Fellowship Program, and/or similar programs.

LDF is the country’s first and foremost civil and human rights law organization. Founded in 1940 under the leadership of Thurgood Marshall, who subsequently became the first Black U.S. Supreme Court Justice, LDF was launched at a time when the nation’s aspirations for equality and due process of law were stifled by widespread state-sponsored racial inequality. From that era to the present, LDF’s mission has been transformative–to achieve racial justice, equality, and an inclusive society.

LDF’s litigation, policy advocacy, organizing, and public education programs in the substantive areas of criminal justice, economic justice, education, and political participation seek to ensure the fundamental and basic human rights of all people to quality education, economic opportunity, the right to vote and fully participate in democracy, and the right to a fair and just judicial system.

We seek to sponsor a Fellow to work in our newly launched Equal Protection Initiative. Fellows within this initiative will develop legal and advocacy strategies to preserve and expand both race-conscious and race-neutral programs to advance racial equity by defending and advancing the proper interpretation of the Equal Protection Clause and anti-discrimination law. The project may include litigation in state and federal courts, policymaking, public education and/or other forms of advocacy. 

Selected candidates will be required to seek their own funding by preparing and submitting proposals to relevant fellowship programs, with guidance from the LDF staff.  For more information about LDF’s work, please visit our website:


Candidates should have a demonstrated commitment to racial justice and addressing racial inequality; outstanding research and writing skills; the ability to work both collaboratively with multidisciplinary teams and independently; and the capacity for creative thinking. 


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The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. We are committed to providing equal employment opportunities to you without regard to race, creed, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, pregnancy, marital status, age, veteran status, medical condition or disability, genetic information, gender identity, or any other protected status under federal, state, or local law.