Yale Law School Announces The Millstone Fund for Criminal Justice Reform

Yale Law School has announced the creation of The Millstone Fund for Criminal Justice Reform to support a broad range of criminal justice reform activities and create new fellowships that will encourage students and graduates to pursue work in the criminal justice field. 

The fund is made possible thanks to a generous gift from Yale College alumni Jennifer Millstone ’00 and David Millstone ’99, which is part of their larger commitment to Yale University.

The Millstone Fund for Criminal Justice Reform will encourage and support Yale Law students in their pursuit of careers in criminal justice reform. The fund will advance all criminal justice reform activities at the Law School, including criminal justice-focused clinics where students tackle issues such as mass incarceration, juvenile justice, public defense, and impact litigation. The gift also establishes an endowment to support three key pillars to help launch students and recent graduates as they take on the challenges of reshaping the criminal justice landscape: a summer fellowship, a post-graduate fellowship, and loan repayment assistance.

“We are incredibly grateful to Jennifer and David Millstone for their generous gift to advance criminal justice reform,” said Dean Heather K. Gerken. “The Millstone Fund for Criminal Justice Reform will strengthen cutting-edge legal work happening at Yale Law School while ensuring our students and graduates have a pathway to launching careers in this vital field.”

“Now more than ever, we need to support young people who are looking to bring their talents to the public sector, and especially those who are passionate about reforming our criminal justice system,” said Jennifer and David Millstone. “As proud Yale alumni, we have long admired Yale’s commitment to making the world a more equitable place, and nowhere is this more evident than in the Law School’s innovative approach to criminal justice reform. We’re excited to help them continue to build on their transformative work.”

The fund will create the Millstone Summer Public Interest Fellowships, which will support up to 12 Yale Law students per year who choose to work in the criminal justice field the summer after their first year of law school. The fund will also create Millstone Public Interest Fellowships, a one-year criminal justice fellowship for Yale Law graduates. Through this fellowship, each recipient will work to develop effective models and strategies to advance criminal justice reform either inside Yale Law School, working with its faculty and clinics, or at an outside organization. Finally, the fund will support loan repayment for Yale Law graduates working in the field of criminal justice who qualify for Yale Law School’s Career Options Assistance Program (COAP) to assist them financially as they navigate new careers.

These newly established programs, which will take effect in the 2020–21 school year, will enable Yale Law students and graduates to pursue their passions and apply their skills to work toward a more equitable criminal justice system.

The Millstone family has long been active supporters of organizations committed to criminal justice reform, including the Bard Prison Initiative, the Equal Justice Initiative, the Innocence Project, the Policing Project at NYU School of Law, and the Fortune Society, where Jennifer Millstone serves on the board. Jennifer also serves on the boards of the Partnership for Public Service, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that works to achieve a more effective federal government, and the 92nd Street Y, a nonprofit cultural and community center located in New York City. David Millstone is co-CEO of Standard Industries, a global building materials company, and serves on the Yale University Council.