BESLA supports law students and recent law school graduates through legal education programs, mentoring, and internship opportunities. BESLA awards financial scholarships to deserving law students that are seeking careers in the entertainment, sports and related industries. Law students affiliated with BESLA become distinguished members of the profession with influential careers.
I. BESLA General Scholarship Fund
The BESLA Scholarship Fund was established to provide a vehicle for “giving back” to the black community. Established in 1989, the BESLA Scholarship Fund annually has provided financial assistance to four African-American law students attending historically Black law schools in the United States: including Florida A&M College of Law, Howard University School of Law, North Carolina Central University School of Law, Southern University Law Center Texas Southern University Thurgood Marshall School of Law and the University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law. Students who have an interest in entertainment or sports law, have demonstrated strong academic performance, and have been recommended by their respective Deans, are potential candidates for a scholarship award. In addition, BESLA has held essay competitions, awarding scholarships to the top essayists. Students from all law schools may apply. Essay topics explore current legal issues in entertainment, sports and intellectual property.
II. Lebaron & Yvonne M. Taylor Scholarship Fund
The LeBaron & Yvonne M. Taylor Scholarship Fund was established by LeBaron Taylor in 1997 to honor his wife, the late Yvonne M. Taylor, who served as the organization’s Administrative Director. Subsequently, upon the death of LeBaron Taylor, his name was added to the Fund as a tribute to his many years of support of BESLA. The funds and criteria for awarding scholarships to students are administered in cooperation with the Taylor family.
III. The Flash and Bennie Wiley Scholarship Fund
In 2015, in recognition of BESLA’s 35th Anniversary Fletcher “Flash” Wiley and his wife, Bennie Wiley endowed the Flash and Bennie Wiley Scholarship Fund. Though a donation of $25000, BESLA will be able to award a minimum $1000 scholarship each year to a deserving student attending a historically black law school.
IV. The BESLA Founders Fund
Established following BESLA’s 35th Annual Conference, the purpose of this fund is to provide scholarships for minority law students. The funds was started with initial donations from Robert Holmes, Flash Wiley and Kendall Minter. For those of you wishing to make cash donations to the Fund, simply send your check made payable to "Black Entertainment and Sports Lawyers Association" to BESLA's Treasurer, P.O. Box 351120, Los Angeles, CA 90035. The fund also accepts stock transfers.