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Public Service Award Recipients Announced

2012 news archive


Newton, MA – Boston College Law School is pleased to announce the recipients of this year’s public service scholarships.

Drinan Scholarship – Michael “Mickey” Ding

The Drinan Family Fund awards $20,000 over two years to a graduating student who will pursue a public sector career. Upon graduation, Michael will join the Marine Corps as a Judge Advocate for a four-year term. While at BC Law, Mickey volunteered with LAB and was President of the Native American Law Students’ Association. He participated all three years in the Navajo Nation Legal Services trip, and also worked for the Navajo Nation during both of his summers.

In recommending him for the award, Professor Ingrid Hillinger wrote, “Some people talk the talk of public service...Mickey lives it.”

Edward T. Bigham III Scholarship (prosecutor) – Kathryn Werner

This Edward T. Bigham III scholarship was established in memory of Edward T. Bigham, III (BC ‘75, BC Law ‘78) who served as an Assistant District Attorney in Massachusetts. The scholarship provides financial support to an outstanding third-year student who intends to pursue a career as a prosecutor. This year's Bigham recipient is Kathryn Werner. All of Kathryn’s experience has focused on her career goal--from her pre-law school experience at the NYC DA’s office and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of NY to her internships with the King’s County DA’s Office and the NYC Police Department and her work in the BC Law prosecution clinic. After graduation, Kathryn will join the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.

The Keefe Family Scholarship – Jennifer Castillo
The Robert S. Pitcoff Memorial Scholarship – James Diaz
The David H. and Mary Murphy Posner Law Scholarship- James Racine

These three scholarships are for current third-year students who have demonstrated an interest in pursuing a career in the public sector.

Jennifer Castillo, this year’s recipient of the Keefe Family award, received a Law Fellowship with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. She plans to work on issues relating to Education in Washington D.C. As a law student, Jennifer participated in the Juvenile Rights Advocacy Program where she represented special education students as a Guardian ad litem. Jennifer also worked at Federal Home Loan mortgage Corporation and at Catholic Charities as a Refugee and Immigration Services intern.

James Diaz, the recipient of the Pitcoff Scholarship, will work with Vermont Legal Aid as their two-year Vermont Poverty Law Fellow following his graduation. In this position he will provide direct legal services. James worked his first summer at LAB and with the National Consumer Law Center during his second summer.  He has also interned with the Department of Labor and volunteered as a student practitioner with the BC Immigration and Asylum Project. 

In writing his recommendation letter, Professor Alan Minuskin stated, “if a person can have public interest in his DNA, then Mr. Diaz is such a person.” James was the school's Champy Award winner during his second year. 

James Racine, the recipient of the Posner Scholarship, accepted a position as a Law Clerk for the Department of Labor.  Before law school, he worked with AmeriCorps. Through the Immigration and Asylum Clinic he represented clients in various immigration matters. He worked his first summer at the Medical-Legal Partnership in Boston and at the U.S. Department of Labor during his second summer. This semester he is working with the International Legal Foundation in Nepal and NYC through our Human Rights Semester in Practice. 

The Lois & James Champy Fellowship- Alexis Applegate

The Lois and James Champy (BC law ’68) Fellowship is for an outstanding second-year student who has demonstrated the intention and ability to work in the public interest. The Champy Fellowship is a scholarship of $10,000 that is paid during the student’s third year of law school. Alexis Applegate is this year’s Champy recipient. Alexis worked as a paralegal for many years before beginning law school. She worked on a team representing American Indians and Tribal Governments and did extensive pro bono work on Guantanamo Bay Detainees, Disabled Veterans and Consolidated Black Farmers Discrimination Litigation cases. Alexis worked last summer with the GBLS-Consumer Rights Unit and this summer she will work with the Legal Mobilization Project of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law in DC. 

Adjunct professor Jonathan Witten, who teaches American Indian Law, noted that “she has devoted endless hours of time assisting the disadvantaged and promoting human and indigenous rights, and has done so with the commitment and zeal that will make her an outstanding attorney and advocate.”