Southwestern Law School Los Angeles, CA

National Lawyers Guild

The National Lawyers Guild is dedicated to the need for basic and progressive change in the structure of our political and economic system. Through its members - lawyers, law students, jailhouse lawyers and legal workers united in chapters and committees - the Guild works locally, nationally and internationally as an effective political and social force in the service of the people.

Our History:

Founded in 1937, the National Lawyers Guild was the nation's first racially integrated bar association. During its 65-year history, the NLG has been an important part of the American people's struggle for real democracy, for economic and social justice and against oppression and discrimination based on race, ethnicity, immigration status, class, gender or sexual orientation. Consistent with its commitment to ensuring fairness and equality for all people, law students, non-lawyer legal workers and inmate legal experts are full members. Guild lawyers fought racial discrimination in cases such as Hansberry v. Lee, the case that struck down segregationist Jim Crow laws in Chicago and was one of the non-governmental organizations (NGO's) selected by the U.S. to officially represent the American people at the founding of the U.N. in 1945. Guild members represented the Hollywood Ten amongst the thousands of victims of the anti-communist hysteria. In the 1960's, the Guild set up offices in the South and organized thousands of volunteer lawyers and law students to provide legal support for the Civil Rights Movement long before the federal government was involved. The Guild has a rich history and a bright future, find out more!

Our Values:

  • To maintain and protect our civil rights and liberties in the face of persistent attacks upon them
  • To eliminate racism
  • To safeguard and strengthen the rights of workers, women, farmers and minority groups, upon whom the welfare of the entire nation depends
  • To use the law as an instrument for the protection of the people, rather than for their repression
  • To create a forum in which progressive law students can meet like-minded practicing attorneys

Our Chapter Activities:

  • Volunteer with other Guild members on local campaigns and clinics
  • Social events to meet and network with practicing attorneys from the Guild such as camping events, off-campus lunches, mixers and much more!
  • Supportive Mentor-Mentee program
  • Speakers and workshops on pertinent career, legal and social issues that affect progressive law students and attorneys
  • Legal observer training (learn to be a legal observer to ensure demonstratorsā€™ Constitutional rights!)
" the end that human rights shall be regarded as more sacred than property interests."



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Students, faculty and staff of Southwestern may view a list of current Student Organization contacts on MySouthwestern (log-in required). All others may contact the Student Affairs Office at (213) 738-6716 or for additional information.