Student Scholarship

Ensuring a Pipeline of Talented Attorneys for the Future

The BESLA Scholarship Program


For over 30 years, BESLA has supported law students through mentoring, volunteer, and internship opportunities.  For more than 20 years, BESLA has awarded financial scholarships to deserving law students that are seeking careers in the entertainment and sports industries.  The program awards at least one scholarship annually to students enrolled at one of the four historically black law schools: Florida A&M University School of Law (Orlando, FL), Southern University Law Center, Howard University (Washington, D.C.), North Carolina Central University School of Law (Durham, NC), and Thurgood Marshall School of Law (Houston, TX).   BESLA also sponsors an annual essay competition open to all law school students.

Thanks to long time scholarship sponsors, the LeBaron & Yvonne M. Taylor Scholarship Fund, Microsoft, and Octavius “Ted” Reid III, BESLA awards five to seven scholarships per year.  The winners are recognized at the Scholarship Luncheon held during the annual BESLA conference.


  • To support the BESLA Scholarship Program, click here

  • For details about the 2019 Essay Competition, click here

  • For details about the scholarship qualifications and requirements, click here


BESLA Achievers

BESLA scholarship winners inevitably become distinguished members of the profession with influential careers.  In 2009, BESLA launched the “BESLA Achiever Award” to recognize student scholarship winners who demonstrate leadership in the profession and a commitment to BESLA.


Past recipients are:

  • 2009 Matthew Middleton, Of Counsel Sweeney, Johnson, and Cates, New York, NY, 2013 Chair,BESLA

  • 2010 John Graves, Attorney, Profiles Sports Consultants, New York, NY, 2013 BESLA Board Member

  • 2011 Johan Powell, Attorney, Law Office of Johan S. Powell, New York, NY

  • 2012 Goldie Gabriel, Director of Legal and Business Affairs for Warner/Chappell Music, Inc. Los Angeles, CA

  • 2013 Vanya Allen, Attorney, Law Office of Vanya Allen and Senior Risk and Compliance Professional, IBM Corporation


Outstanding Commitment to BESLA Students​
BESLA also honors its members who provide mentoring and financial support to BESLA student members.  The most recent honorees are:

  • 2011 Octavius “Ted” Reid, III, Senior Vice President and Wealth Advisor with Morgan Stanley, Philadelphia Pennsylvania

  • 2012 Ricky Anderson, Managing Partner of the Law Firm of Anderson & Smith P.C., Houston, TX

  • 2013 Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., President & CEO, Thurgood Marshall Fund, Washington, DC

Details and Deadline: Submissions, including all scholarship requirements must be received via email on or before  Monday, October 14, 2019 - 11:59pm EST. Please see the attachment for complete details.

BESLA’s Annual membership enrollment period begins in January each year

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