Our History

The Cabrini Green Legal Aid Clinic (CGLA) was conceptualized in the basement of Chicago’s LaSalle Street Church when Pastor Bill Leslie asked me to run a full-time legal clinic as a ministry of the church to meet the community’s legal needs. I told him I would do it if the church could provide the funding. Bill raised the first full-year’s budget two weeks later and Cabrini Green Legal Aid Clinic was officially founded in 1973.

CGLA was established as a faith-based community organization of the “faith-informed” model where religious belief underlies the foundational and philosophical motivation to serve the poor. CGLA’s purpose was established to answer God’s call to seek justice and mercy by providing legal services to the poorest of the poor. We established the Clinic by bringing our faith values to the practice of law, to provide a holistic service or “lawyering-plus” to serve the whole person.

I agreed to Pastor Leslie’s request to answer God's call to defend those who cannot help themselves, by speaking up for the poor and needy and see that they get justice. (Proverbs 31: 8 & 9, LB.) I’m honored and humbled to see that the work continues so many years later.

Chuck Hogren, Founding Attorney of Cabrini Green Legal Aid Clinic

Our Mission

We provide holistic legal services that include social support services and advocacy for individuals and communities negatively impacted by the criminal legal system.

Our Vision

A more just and equitable criminal legal system.

Our Purpose

CGLA exists to remove barriers to equity in the criminal legal system.