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ArchCity Defenders Announces Creation of Young Friends Board

February 25, 2019

ArchCity Defenders is proud to announce the establishment and call for members of the Young Friends of ArchCity Defenders. The Young Friends of ACD seeks to energize and mobilize new and existing supporters and allies of the ACD mission by forming a social community and professional network to benefit ArchCity and the thousands of individuals on whose behalf ACD advocates. ArchCity Defenders’ Board has appointed attorney Derick D. Dailey of the law firm Dowd Bennett LLP to serve as Chair of the Young Friends Board. He will also serve as a member of the ArchCity Defenders Board of Directors.

ArchCity Defenders provides holistic legal services to individuals in order to remove barriers to housing and social services, and advocates in state and federal court through impact litigation, to bring about systemic criminal justice reform. Recently, ArchCity has challenged the constitutionality of St. Louis City’s cash bail system and is working to prevent and end homelessness among the indigent and working poor in the St. Louis region.

“We could not be more excited to establish the Young Friends of ArchCity Defenders, and are thrilled to have the leadership of Derick Dailey as Chair of the Young Friends Board,” says Blake Strode, Executive Director of ArchCity. “We have known for years that this region needs systemic change to combat the structural inequities that exist for poor and black residents, and we believe that young people will be the drivers of this change.”

“I am honored to serve with ArchCity and its countless advocates to fight back against systems and institutions that seek to criminalize poverty and prevent social and economic mobility for the region’s most marginalized,” says Dailey.

“Three months out of law school in 2009,” says board chair, Stephanie Grise, “our founders established ArchCity Defenders to provide access to justice for communities who otherwise were left to navigate the court system on their own. They were new to the practice of law, and learned a lot along the way, but they never lost focus on their top priority: their clients. As we grow and evolve as an organization, fresh voices and new ideas will continue to be essential to our success.”

The first YF meeting and event will take place in the coming weeks. Persons interested in joining the YF can sign up by contacting Derick Dailey or Nathaniel Carroll at 314-332-4664. Additionally, representatives from the YF Board will be present at the upcoming ArchCity Defenders Trivia Night on Saturday, March 23 to register new YF members.

For additional information, visit, follow #YoungFriendsofACD, and/or email Derick D. Dailey at


Media Contact:
Z. Gorley, Communications Director at ArchCity Defenders