In August, the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Charitable Service Trust significantly increased an existing grant to expand its support of the Veterans Legal Clinic and other veterans’ advocacy program at Harvard Law School’s WilmerHale Legal Services Center. The grant, which now totals $1 million to cover four years of veterans’ advocacy, supports the clinic’s work in a number of practice areas including federal court appeals of veterans’ benefit denials, discharge upgrades, estate planning, combatting predatory student lending, and IRS tax controversies. Among other things, the grant enabled the clinic to hire attorney Elizabeth R. Gwin as the DAV Charitable Service Trust Fellow, where she works across several of these practice areas.
A portion of the grant is devoted to launching the DAV Distinguished Speaker Series at HLS in collaboration with the HLS Armed Forces Association (AFA). The first lecture will be delivered by Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert A. McDonald, who will be introduced by Senator Jack Reed ’82, a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. McDonald, also a West Point graduate and former CEO of the Proctor & Gamble Company, will speak at the law school on November 24.
HLS Dean Martha Minow said: “This exceptionally supportive grant from the DAV Charitable Service Trust is real cause for celebration because it supports expansion of critically important legal services for our veterans and great opportunities for our talented and dedicated students. Even in the short span of time since the launch of our Veterans Clinic, our students’ advocacy has produced landmark victories on behalf of veterans, and I am so grateful that with this terrific grant so many more can obtain help in securing benefits and fair treatment for those who have so selflessly served our nation.”
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