June 01, 2008

Bridget Donegan

Midwest Environmental Advocates, Madison, WI

Midwest Environmental Advocates (Madison, WI)

Midwest Environmental Advocates is a public interest environmental law firm that brings litigation on behalf of the public against polluters or state agencies as well works to further environmentalist policies across Wisconsin. MEA also acts as a clearinghouse for members of the public looking for legal assistance on environmental issues in their communities. I worked directly with MEA’s attorneys, paralegal, and executive director on projects that included public commenting, discreet research regarding rule changes from state and federal agencies, and a CLE presentation. I also was involved in meetings between MEA and opposing counsel as well as MEA and regulatory agencies. Further, MEA provides a great opportunity to learn about the day to day functions at a nonprofit law firm by allowing summer law clerks to attend board and staff meetings.

The summer law clerks at MEA are funded partially or totally by outside stipends like PILP stipend. I feel very lucky to have been given the opportunity to work at such a well-respected organization doing wonderful work in Wisconsin. Without the PILP stipend, MEA would not have been able to pay me and I would not have been able to work there. In that way, the stipend really serves the public interest by providing needed work to important organizations as well as by providing invaluable exposure and experience to those of us just beginning our careers.