Apply for the Lynn Walker Huntley Social Justice Fellowship

Interested applicants should complete the online application form and submit their resume, writing samples, transcripts, and letters of recommendations as PDFs via email to We suggest completing the application in Word and then transferring answers to the online form.

The Lynn Walker Huntley Social Justice Fellowship honors the rich legacy of Lynn Walker Huntley, a trailblazing lawyer and architect in philanthropy who was deeply involved in a wide spectrum of civil rights cases and causes. Among her many accomplishments, Lynn Walker Huntley was the first Black woman to serve as Editor of the Columbia Law Review, the first Black woman to head the Special Litigation Section in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, and the first woman president of the Southern Education Foundation.

The Lynn Walker Huntley Social Justice Fellowship will provide early-career attorneys with the skill and experience necessary to advance education equity through research, policy analysis, and litigation. The goal is to build a pool of attorneys prepared to support efforts to increase educational opportunities for students of color and students from low-income families in the southern states.

The Southern Education Foundation and the Southern Poverty Law Center will award one two-year fellowship each year to a third-year law student interested in pursuing a career in civil rights law. The fellowship will begin the September following law school graduation.

Lynn Walker Huntley Social Justice Fellows will concentrate their activity in five key states: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Mississippi.

The Lynn Walker Huntley Social Justice Fellow will:

  • assist in developing and implementing strategies to advance education equity policies at local, state, regional, and national levels;
  • research and identify education issues to address through legislation or litigation at the regional and national levels; and
  • hold advocacy trainings for SEF staff and other equity-minded stakeholders.

At the conclusion of the fellowship, each fellow will produce a report or project describing the progress made on a key education equity issue as a result of their contributions.

Fellows will receive ongoing professional development and mentorship from the Southern Education Foundation and the Southern Poverty Law Center. The fellowship will be based at the Southern Education Foundation office in Atlanta, Georgia.

Fellows Receive

Experience and skills building: Fellows will work in the office of the Southern Education Foundation under the supervision of SEF’s Director Government Affairs & Advocacy and with SEF and Southern Poverty Law Center staff, who will provide direction and assistance. The fellow will gain exposure to a broad array of education equity issues, with a particular focus on constructive solutions to eliminate disparities in public education funding to ensure all students have the resources needed to learn, grow, and thrive.

In addition to supporting grassroots advocacy, the Southern Education Foundation often engages in both legislative and judicial processes to advance policies that enable equity and opportunity in education.

The Southern Poverty Law Center works in partnership with communities to dismantle white supremacy, strengthen intersectional movements, and advance the human rights of all people.  Through outreach advocacy and impact litigation, the Southern Poverty Law Center focuses on developing solutions for harmful social justice ills like those of inequity in education for vulnerable children

Stipend: Fellows will receive an annual stipend.

Travel expenses: Fellows will be reimbursed for or have covered any necessary travel related to the Fellowship during the two-year period.

Experience with the legislative process: Each of the five states the fellowship will focus on has a different legislative process; the fellow will learn how each operates and how to negotiate them.

Eligibility and Other Requirements

  • Must be a third-year law student who will graduate prior to the beginning of the fellowship period (the following fall)
  • Must have a GPA of 3.2 or higher
  • Must have a demonstrated interest in civil rights and education
  • Must have excellent interpersonal, writing, and critical thinking skills
  • Must be willing to relocate to Atlanta, Georgia for the two-year duration of the fellowship

2022 Fellowship Key Dates:

  • Informational Webinar for Potential Applicants: 2pm ET, September 1, 2021
  • Application Deadline: October 15, 2021
  • Selection Announced: November 19, 2021
  • Fellowship Begins: September 2022
  • Fellowship Ends: August 2024

Prospective Fellows Webinar September 1, 2021

The Southern Education Foundation (SEF) and the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) held an informational webinar for prospective fellows on September 1, 2021. SEF Director of Government Affairs & Advocacy Codeye J. Woody, SEF Chief Operating Officer Kenita Williams, and SPLC Senior Supervising Attorney Michael Tafelski explained the application process and the fellowship and answered questions.


Have questions about the fellowship? See our FAQ for answers to general questions. For additional assistance, please forward all inquiries to