This story was originally published on the UGA School of Law site on Feb. 23, 2023.
The University of Georgia School of Law is pleased to share that 1983 School of Law alumnus Michael Evert, his wife Angi and their daughters – Emily Evert Scanlon (BBA ’09), Georgia Evert O’Donoghue (BBA ’11) and Maggie Evert Jones (AB ’13) – have made a major commitment to support the Veterans Legal Clinic. The establishment of the Michael and Angi Evert Family Endowment for the Veterans Legal Clinic offers perpetual support to help fund the clinic’s operations.
The Veterans Legal Clinic assists former Georgia military members with claims before the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Under the leadership of Director Alex Scherr, the clinic has helped approximately 700 veterans and their family members claim more than $2 million in benefits.
The clinic also provides law students with world-class, hands-on and purpose-driven educational experiences. Students work directly with clients, including veterans and their family members, through interviews, counseling, and advocacy; develop claims for disability by working with doctors and mental health providers; advocate with administrative agencies including the VA and the military; contact veterans in rural communities throughout Georgia; and address broader issues through amicus briefs and requests for rulemaking.
Dean Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge said, “I’d like to thank Michael, Angi and their daughters for their valuable contribution supporting the operations of the Veterans Legal Clinic. Following the catalytic commitment by Jim Butler (JD ’77) and others to create the clinic, the Evert family support fund will help those who have served our country. It also exemplifies part of the law school’s broader pledge to veterans, whether in our student body or our state.”
This long-term, dedicated funding will be used for general operations including staffing and administrative support, travel, litigation funds, application fees, mailing expenses and externships/fellowships for students.
“Those who risk their lives for our country deserve our utmost support,” Michael said. “Harry Truman stated it best: ‘Our debt to the heroic men and valiant women in the service of our country can never be repaid. They have earned our undying gratitude.’ The Veterans Legal Clinic provides veterans with access to UGA’s brilliant law students. This not only helps those in need but also creates clinical experiences for our law students, which is a critical aspect of educating new lawyers. Our family fervently believes these are outcomes worth supporting.”
Rutledge added that gifts, such as this one from the Evert family, are helping the School of Law to redefine what it means to be a great national public law school, while also strengthening our ongoing commitment to support those who have served our country.