We are proud to announce that Jake Coolidge received the Montana Law Student Pro Bono Service Award this fall. This award is a collaborative effort between the University of Montana Law School, private firms and attorneys, Montana Legal Services Association, and the local judiciary to recognize the outstanding volunteer work of law students. The award is given annually in October during National Pro Bono week to a 3L student who has demonstrated extraordinary commitment to public service-in particular the field of pro bono legal work.

The ACLU of Montana office has worked with Jake on multiple projects for over three years, even before he started law school. Jake exudes a passion for helping those in society with less power, such as those who are incarcerated or Native American populations, and working towards systemic change. He has surpassed expectations with every project we’ve ever collaborated on and we were thrilled to nominate Jake for this award.

Jake’s many contributions to our work over the past several years include: helping to design the methodology, conducting legal research, and writing and re-writing many sections of the ACLU of Montana’s Jail Report which was published in February, 2015; working as a leader in the ACLU-MT Law School Club, ensuring that public education events happened at the law school, and serving as the Law Student Representative to the ACLU-MT’s Board of Directors; and helping with preliminary research and project design for our enhanced Racial Justice Project, which is working to address systemic racial justice issues in Montana.
Jake is planning to pursue a career as a public defender in Montana when he graduates from the University of Montana’s Law School in May, 2016.
Jacob Coolidge - Montana Law Student Pro Bono Service Award