The Lawyers’ Assistance Program was founded in 1980 by a concerned group of lawyers who saw the need for members of the profession to reach out to help colleagues impaired by alcohol abuse and addiction. By August of that year, Lawyers’ Assistance Program, Inc. was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation.
These committed volunteers sought guidance from addiction treatment professionals and engaged clinicians to educate themselves on addiction and recovery, instruct them on peer support and on intervention techniques. Behind the scenes, these volunteers worked quietly and confidentially to help legal professionals find recovery. By 2001, LAP had two full-time employees – an executive director and an administrative assistant. In 2003, LAP opened a downstate office in the metro east area to better serve clients outside the Chicago area and hired a part-time associate director to work from that office.