Rockdale native is 1st recipient of Will County Legal Opportunity Scholarship

Rockdale native is 1st recipient of Will County Legal Opportunity Scholarship

The scholarship program encourages diversity within the legal community of Will County

By Denise M. Baran-Unland

Photo of Adrian Guzman, Robert Bodach, president of the Will County Bar Association, Rolonda Mitchell, Black Bar Association of Will County, Christian Spesia, Spesia & Taylor

Adrian Guzman (second from left) was chosen as the first recipient of the Will County Legal Opportunity Scholarship. He is pictured with scholarship representatives (from left) Robert Bodach, president of the Will County Bar Association; Rolonda Mitchell, Black Bar Association of Will County; and Christian Spesia from Spesia & Taylor. Philip Villasenor of the Latino Bar Association of Will County is not pictured.

A Rockdale resident who dreamed of becoming a lawyer is now one giant step closer to realizing it.

The Will County Bar Association announced at its picnic last Saturday that Adrian Guzman, the son of immigrants from Mexico, was the first recipient of the Will County Legal Opportunity Scholarship, a release from the association said.

Recipients of the scholarship are “eligible to receive up to $46,000 to help repay outstanding legal education debt,” the Will County Bar Association website said. In return, the scholarship recipients will be expected to practice law in Will County.

Scholarship committee members said in a Herald-News story in January that the purpose of the scholarship is to encourage diversity among the legal community in Will County. Guzman agreed the concept is a good one.

“It’s nice to give back to the community you grew up in,” Guzman said.

This scholarship program is a collaboration among the Will County Bar Association, the Black Bar Association of Will County, Latino Bar Association of Will County, Will County Women’s Bar Association and Spesia & Taylor Attorneys at Law. A scholarship committee selected four finalists, the release said.

Read the full press release at:
shawlocal.com

Will County Legal Opportunity Scholarship Program

Learn more about the program and how to apply.

Putting Their Money Where Their Beliefs Are

Putting Their Money Where Their Beliefs Are

Will County lawyers offering unique scholarship to help promote diversity

By Denise M. Baran-Unland

Members of the Will County Bar Scholarship Committee

Members of the Will County Legal Opportunity Scholarship Program committee are, from left: Phillip Villasenor, Shenonda Tisdale, Rolonda Mitchell, Hon. Donald DeWilkins, Jaya Varghese and Chris Spesia.

For perhaps the first time in Will County history, several bar associations in Will County have come together to offer one black or Latino law student a really significant scholarship.

The scholarship recipient will be “eligible to receive up to $46,000 to help repay outstanding legal education debt,” the Will County Bar Association website said.

In return, the scholarship recipient will be expected to practice law in Will County. Scholarship committee members said the purpose of the scholarship is to encourage diversity among the legal community in Will County.

The concept started about six months ago with Chris Spesia of Spesia & Taylor Attorneys at Law in Joliet.

“The events of last year were troubling for everybody,” Spesia said. “So I started to think what we could do that would be positive.”

Spesia started making some calls and discussing ideas, which led to the formation of an official scholarship committee.

Read the full press release at:
shawlocal.com

Will County Legal Opportunity Scholarship Program

Learn more about the program and how to apply.