Bid Opportunities

Bid Opportunities

Contract Opportunity

Request for Proposals due by 5:00 p.m. CST on October 10, 2023

Holistic Defense Training and Assessment Contractor
Office of the Missouri Public Defender
Holistic Defense Services Division

Solicitation: The Missouri State Public Defender (MSPD) is accepting proposals for a Holistic Defense Training and Assessment Contractor (“Contractor”). The selected Contractor will serve as an independent contractor who will help train MSPD staff on the skills and practices necessary for the implementation of a holistic defense practice, and who will help to assess and develop MSPD’s holistic defense programming. MSPD is seeking a dedicated and experienced Contractor who will help us achieve these goals through the provision of training and program assessment services.

The Contractor will contract their services to MSPD for a term of approximately 12-18 months starting on or about October 12, 2023, payable in monthly installments.

Holistic Defense Services at MSPD: MSPD is pioneering a more holistic approach to public defense through the implementation of its Holistic Defense Services (HDS) program. This approach promises to help MSPD staff, and the courts better understand what brings our clients into the criminal legal system – and to address those underlying issues. By focusing more on the root causes of criminal legal system involvement, HDS will be able to help reduce pretrial incarceration, prison sentences, and recidivism. Ultimately, with this holistic approach, our clients, their families, and our communities will be healthier and safer. The HDS unit is a statewide unit comprised of social workers and other non-legal advocates who work directly with MSPD clients to connect them to services in the community and provide mitigation advocacy throughout various stages of their cases. Currently, the HDS unit includes 2 managers, 1 coordinator, 7 mitigation specialists, 10 holistic advocates, and 3 holistic defense program development VISTAs. All HDS staff are based in different MSPD trial offices across the state of Missouri. In-person training is typically provided at MSPD’s Training Center in Columbia, MO.

Anticipated Number of Client Advocate Provider Partners: One

Overview and Scope of Project: MSPD is seeking a Contractor to work towards three goals that will equip MSPD with the ability to address underlying causes and risk factors of violence and criminal behavior:

  1. Provide training to MSPD’s Holistic Defense Services (HDS) staff to effectively provide case management and mitigation advocacy services to clients.
  2. Provide training to MSPD attorneys and core staff to effectively integrate holistic and community-based practices into client representation.
  3. Create program evaluation procedures and assess the impact of HDS programming on client outcomes and public safety.

The training that Contractor provides to MSPD under this contract should include advanced training for existing HDS staff, introductory training for the new staff that will be joining HDS over the coming year, and training for attorneys and core staff on how to implement holistic practices into their work.

Goals:The Contractor and MSPD will collaborate to measure the impact of the training and assessment services provided. The following are the Goals, Objectives, and Measurement criteria. The Contractor must be able to work towards these goals and will be expected to assist with this portion of the project evaluation.

  • Goal 1: Provide training to Holistic Defense Services (HDS) staff to effectively provide client services and case management.
    Description: The Holistic Defense Services unit, including the Mitigation Specialists, Holistic Advocates, AmeriCorps members, social work interns and other staff identified by the MSPD will be trained on three basic skills topics: enmeshed penalties of criminal legal contact, addressing client social service needs through case management and providing proactive mitigation.

    • Objective 1: HDS Unit staff will receive training on enmeshed penalties, case management, and mitigation.
      How will this objective be measured? Number of staff members trained.
    • Objective 2: HDS Unit staff with previous basic training will be trained on advanced training curriculum meeting real time needs of HDS unit.
      How will this objective be measured? Number of staff members trained.
  • Goal 2: Provide training to MSPD attorneys and core staff to effectively integrate HDS staff into client representation.
    Description: MSPD attorneys and staff will receive training focused on a tactical, comprehensive framework for MSPD attorneys to embed their existing practices with holistic defense. Topics will include Holistic Defense, enmeshed penalties of the legal system, mitigation, and collaboration.

    • Objective 1: MSPD attorney staff will receive training on Holistic defense, enmeshed penalties, mitigation, and collaboration.
      How will this objective be measured? Number of staff members trained.
    • Objective 2: MSPD core staff will receive training on Holistic defense, enmeshed penalties, mitigation, and collaboration.
      How will this objective be measured? Number of staff member trained.
  • Goal 3: Contractor will create program evaluation procedures and assess the impact of HDS programming on client outcomes and public safety.
    Description: Contractor will create program evaluation procedures to measure the impact of the existing HDS unit, identify any gaps in services and make recommendations for improvements in the system design and evaluation procedures. Evaluation will address program progress, client services provided, effects of collaborative efforts, the impact on client outcomes, and the benefits gained from the program.

    • Objective 1: Contractor will evaluate HDS programming through surveys and interviews of select MSPD staff and clients.
      How will this objective be measured? Number of interviews and survey responses from select MSPD staff and clients.
    • Objective 2: Contractor will gather information on optimal program evaluation procedures through reviews of data collection procedures, client outcome data statewide, and HDS referral data.
      How will this objective be measured? Output report by Contractor on the overview of HDS program evaluation procedures and recommendations for further improvements.

Contractor Role and Criteria:The ideal Contractor will possess the following qualifications and experience:

    • Demonstrated experience in holistic defense practices, emphasizing a client-centered and multidisciplinary approach.
    • Excellent reputation and history of providing training in holistic defense practices to public defense offices and staff.
    • Experience working within a similar relationship with public defender offices or criminal justice entities preferred.
    • Commitment and ability to maintain confidentiality in accordance with the rules of attorney-client privilege and confidentiality, including Missouri Supreme Court Rule 4 and applicable local, state and federal laws.
    • Preference for contractors with an understanding of the public defense system in Missouri and MSPD/HDS practices.

Funding Stipulations: Funding for this contract is being provided as part of MSPD’s Subaward for grant funding under the State of Missouri’s Department of Public Safety and the United State Department of Justice’s 2022/2023 State Crisis Intervention Program (SCIP). Funding for the Contractor is dependent on MSPD’s continued receipt of funds through this grant award. Should MSPD’s SCIP grant be terminated at any point, it reserves the right to terminate any contract entered into as a result of the SCIP grant award, including funding for the selected Contractor. The Contractor shall be entitled to receive just and equitable compensation for that work completed prior to the effective date of termination of SCIP funding to MSPD.

Compliance with State and Federal Law: Eligible Contractors must agree to comply with all Federal and State contracting requirements, including but not limited to the following:

  • The Contractor must comply with Section 285.530 RSMo. and maintain proof of liability insurance.
  • The Contractor must use E-Verify ( to confirm employment eligibility within its own organization, for the purposes of properly verifying the employment eligibility of hired individuals consistent with the provisions of 8 U.S.C. 1324(a)(1) as a contract partner of a MSPD, a subrecipient of United States funding.
  • The Contractor must agree to adhere to the OJP Training Guiding Principles for Grantees for the development or delivery of any training. Training Guiding Principles for Grantees and Subgrantees | Office of Justice Programs (
  • The Contractor must assure that all project personnel funded through this contract will maintain timesheets that detail 100% of their time along with the activities and services provided. The timesheets must be signed by both the Contractor’s employee and the appropriate approving official at MSPD.
  • Upon awarding this contract, Contractor must agree to following the Contractual Requirements and other applicable requirements set out by Missouri Department of Public Safety’s Financial and Administrative Guide (Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Unit), including a written contract stating the services to be provided/performed, rate of compensation, and length of time of which the services will be provided/performed. All payments provided to Contractor must be supported by statements outlining the services rendered and supporting the period covered.
  • Contractor must agree to abide by any other terms set out in MSPD’s SCIP Subaward Agreement’s Articles of Agreement.

The Proposal Should Include:

  • Project Narrative (no more than 5 pages double-spaced).
    • The Project Narrative should include a brief overview / background of your organization, including your experience in holistic defense and the provision of holistic defense training and assessment; Scope of work and Deliverables; and a Timeline and Budget. All travel and reimbursable costs must comply with travel and purchasing rules for State of Missouri agencies.
  • Organizational Overview and Team Biographies
  • Organizational affirmation of ability to comply with State and Federal Laws as outlined above.

All documents should be combined into one .pdf prior to submission and emailed as one attachment to the address provided below.

All submitted proposals will be reviewed and evaluated based on the following factors:

  • Qualifications – 40%
  • Cost – 40%
  • Proposal – 20%

In the event only one bid is received in response to this RFP, the contract must receive approval from the Missouri Department of Public Safety before MSPD may award it.

How to Submit a Proposal: Proposals should be submitted by email no later than 5:00 p.m. CST on October 10, 2023, to Fallon Watson at the Missouri State Public Defender’s Office at Any questions about the proposal should also be submitted via email to

After the period to submit proposals has closed, MSPD may conduct interviews with selected applicants before selecting the Contractor.

The Office of the State Public Defender reserves the right to reject any and all proposals.