In 2010, Rebecca L. Sandefur joined the American Bar Foundation to found and lead a new access to justice research initiative. She continues to head up this initiative as Faculty Fellow at the Foundation and also serves on the sociology faculty of the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. Sandefur's research focuses on inequality, particularly as it relates to law. Her scholarship includes investigations of work and inequality in the legal profession and other professional occupations, lawyers' pro bono service and its contributions to legal aid, and studies of ordinary people’s experiences with common problems that could bring them into contact with the civil justice system. Sandefur’s most recent publication is Access Across America, co-authored with PhD-student Aaron Smyth. The Access report is the first-ever national and state-by-state portrait of how free access to civil justice services are produced, funded, coordinated, and regulated. In 2011, Sandefur received funding from the National Science Foundation (SES-1123507) and the American Bar Foundation for the Community Needs and Services Study, a community-sited, multi-method study of ordinary people’s experiences with civil justice problems and the resources available to assist them in handling those problems. Her public service complements her research and teaching, and has included advising state access to justice commissions and service on the Right to Counsel Committee of the California Access to Justice Commission and the Research Advisory Board of the Civil Right to Counsel Leadership and Support Initiative. Before joining the Foundation, Sandefur served 9 years on the faculty of Stanford University after receiving her PhD in sociology from the University of Chicago in 2001.