The Warren County Bar Foundation is a unique charitable organization in that it is one of only a few local county bar foundations in the State of New York. It acts as the charitable wing of the Warren County Bar Association. Formed in November 1981, the Hon. John G. Dier, longtime Warren County Supreme Court Justice, served as its first President. The initial Board of Directors consisted of local legal luminaries such as John “Jack” C. Mannix, Alan R. Rhodes, Thomas C. Curran, Louis M. Carusone and Arthur R. Greenberg. All members of the Warren County Bar Association are automatically members of the Foundation.
Following a major bequest by the Estates of John & Laura Miller, the Foundation was able to begin fulfilling its purposes by awarding scholarships to students attending accredited law schools. Initially the Board awarded scholarships only to Warren County residents, but has since amended its By-Laws which expanded the scope of the Foundation to residents of Warren County and all contiguous counties, making the Foundation truly regional in its scope of operations. As the Foundation has continued to grow, the Board of Directors has searched out new projects and goals as a means to implement the broad-based purposes of the organization, and to meet the needs of the region, beyond the immediate traditional legal community. Current initiatives include the following: scholarships for students attending accredited law schools; merit awards to community organizations; a legal symposium for high school seniors; the Pat Mannix Dinner for members of the Warren County Bar Association; and the March Mixer annual fundraiser. The Foundation also traditionally underwrites various law related projects such as the annual Mock Trial competitions in local high schools, Warren County Law Day Programs and projects to preserve the history of the Warren County Bar, such as providing funds to frame photographs of the local bar members for display in the Warren County Center.
In order to maintain its status with the Internal Revenue Service as a charitable foundation, the Board of Directors is required to raise funds annually. The primary fundraiser for the organization is mixer, with live and silent auctions, which is held each year during the month of March. The foundation has also conducted raffles, and solicits donations in the form of memorials for members of the bench and bar and other donations from its members.