Jefferson County will benefit from scholarships established by the Altheimer Charitable Foundation
The Ben J. Altheimer Charitable Foundation Inc. established the Ben J. Altheimer Public Service Fellowships to promote and provide experiential opportunities for U of A Law School students with an interest in public service. The donation will enable law students to have a lasting impact on access to justice issues in the Delta region.
The $74,500 award will support a three-year Post JD Fellow in Jefferson County and 10 public service scholarships – one public service scholarship in Jefferson County each summer for the next 10 years. At least one of these scholarships will be with an organization in the city of Altheimer.
As part of the law school’s broader efforts to fulfill the university’s land-grant mission, former law school dean Margaret Sova McCabe created the Summer Public Service Fellowship Program in 2019 to encourage interested first- and second-year law students who have demonstrated a commitment to public service. To date, 28 students have received scholarships and contributed their expertise to governmental, non-governmental and non-profit organizations in Washington, DC, Massachusetts, Arizona, California, surrounding states, the Arkansas Delta and throughout Arkansas, while gaining work experience. Another 10 students received scholarships in 2022 and will start working this summer.
The law school seeks to quickly establish a strong public service program that creates innovative synthesis experiences, enabling students to make meaningful interdisciplinary contributions to Arkansas, nationally and internationally. Stacy Leeds, dean emeritus and former law professor, began this work by appointing a faculty director of voluntarily and community service. Cyndi Nance, Dean Emeritus and Nathan G. Gordon Professor of Law, served as the first director; Annie Smith, associate professor of law, now runs the program, which has been renamed public service and voluntarily to better reflect changes in program focus.
The scholarships, created to benefit the Delta Region, recognize Ben J. Altheimer’s contributions and commitment to public service, his commitment to Jefferson County, and excellence in the legal profession.
Altheimer, a successful attorney, was born in Pine Bluff, where he practiced law before moving to Chicago and establishing one of that city’s most prestigious law firms there in 1910. He frequently returned to Arkansas , where he had acquired farmland near Altheimer. The town is named after his father and uncle, who donated land to the railroad for the establishment of a depot. He established the Ben J. Altheimer Foundation before his death in 1946 to benefit 35 programs in Arkansas, including several within the U of A System. Altheimer was the sole trustee of the Ben J. Altheimer Foundation until his death, when five trustees appointed by him assumed responsibility for its continuation. It remained in existence for 50 years and was replaced by the Ben J. Altheimer Charitable Foundation in 1995.
Since 1946, the Ben J. Altheimer Charitable Foundation, much like its predecessor, has donated millions of dollars to charities and programs throughout Arkansas, primarily to benefit agriculture in Jefferson County – with a special focus on the city of Altheimer – and the law.
The Ben J. Altheimer Charitable Foundation Inc. and its predecessor are longtime supporters of the U of A system and its institutions. He previously supported the U of A Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences, as well as other schools in the U of A system.
“Consistent with our status as a land-grant institution, the School of Law is thrilled to use this donation to help provide access to legal services to underserved Arkansans,” said Alena Allen, Acting Dean of the School. by right.
About the School of Law: The law school offers a competitive JD as well as an advanced LL.M. curriculum, which are taught by nationally recognized faculty. The school offers unique opportunities for students to participate in pro bono work, internships, live client clinics, competitions, and food and agriculture initiatives. The school strives to identify, discuss and challenge issues of race, color, ethnicity and the impacts they have on students, faculty and staff members with the aim of create a diverse, inclusive and equitable community. From the admission of the six pioneers who were the first African-American students to attend law school in the South without a court order, to the governors, judges, prosecutors and graduate professors who became President of the United States and Secretary of State, Law The school has a rich history and culture. Follow us on @uarklaw.