CU’s Veteran’s Legal Clinic to provide legal assistance to veterans associated with CU.
Leah Gould, a 26-year-old law student, and Kevin Brown, a 33 year-old law student, co-founded the Military Law Society. Gould partnered with Mark Fogg, president of the Colorado Bar Association, to set up a clinic in Boulder.
The Military Law Society began in the fall of 2011, and the CU Veteran’s Legal Clinic began in May of this year after a several month long process by Gould and other veterans turned CU law students. All people associated with the clinic work voluntarily.
Gould works as the coordinator of the clinic and maintains communication with the Colorado Bar Association. She works to find volunteer law students to go to the clinic every month and help out.
“A lot of attorneys don’t have experience in the military, but a lot of our law students do,” Gould said. “I have at least one person at the clinic who’s kind of been there and has that sense of camaraderie with another veteran so they kind of speak the same language.”
Kevin Brown, a veteran himself, believes that every veteran has a connection with each other.
“I think that’s unique,” Brown said. “It goes beyond Colorado law. It’s part of that loyalty that service members have towards one another.”
Brown sees the clinic to be a resource for veterans that provides education and support not just at CU, but also towards a future in law by providing networking and job opportunities.
Clinics in Colorado have helped about 245 veterans; of which about 10 of them have been helped at CU.
Ray Pinchbeck, a 19-year-old sophomore open option major, finds it important for people to take the initiative to make a positive impact in the world.
“I believe it’s a great idea to provide an opportunity to fulfill people’s dreams and ambitions,” Pinchbeck said. “I appreciate that somebody’s looking out for people that are trying to integrate themselves back into the community.”
Matt Montazzoli, a 29-year-old sophomore law student and current president of the clinic, believes that the clinic should be a gateway for all veterans in Boulder and not just student veterans at CU.
“The veterans we have here [CU campus] are high functioning,” Montazzoli said. “The turnouts been pretty low. What we’d like to do is work to move the clinic off the CU campus so we can help the people who really need the help.”
Montazzoli thinks that the clinic has great potential and believes that the state of Colorado has done a lot with the clinics they have up and running.
“The programs, overall, they’re expanding. They’re doing great things from Denver to Grand Junction, all over the state” he said.
Montazzoli sees the CU Veterans Legal Clinic as a step towards a largely expandable program that will be able to help more people than actually anticipated.
“What we’d like to do is work to move the clinic,” Montazzoli said. “It’s going to have to be off the CU campus so we can help the people who really need the help. They’re 20 thousand veterans in Boulder County. It’s too easy to look up the estimates and the number of homeless folks in Boulder who are veterans. There are plenty of people who need the help.”
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Haleema Mian at Haleema.firstname.lastname@example.org.