Erin Madden J.D. ’04 and Alex Brown
Erin Madden’s family didn’t camp much when she was a child, but that didn’t stop her from cultivating a passion for the great outdoors. “When I was growing up, I loved playing in the woods behind our house,” she says. “The forest is still my favorite playground. My husband, Alex Brown, and I love hiking, rafting, mushroom gathering—just enjoying the forest and the rivers.”
Erin, J.D. ’04, worked to protect the environment through a number of positions before finding her calling as an attorney specializing in public interest environmental law. While at Lewis & Clark Law School, she put her skills to work right away, serving on the board of the Northwest Environmental Defense Center and as a law clerk in the Pacific Environmental Advocacy Center. Since graduating, she has built on those experiences and opened her own practice, Cascadia Law P.C.
“Oregon motivates me to do this kind of work,” she says. “It’s an amazing place to live, from the Mount Hood National Forest to pockets of beauty in and around Portland and throughout the state. It’s important to protect that.”
Erin and Alex, who is executive director Bark, a nonprofit environmental organization dedicated to protecting Mt. Hood National Forest, have made sure that environmental protection will last well into the future by adding Lewis & Clark’s Loan Repayment Assistance Program to their will. By providing financial assistance to future law school graduates committed to public interest law, they hope they can encourage those who are drawn to the field to pursue their dreams.
“We can’t afford to have our nation’s newest and brightest attorneys burdened with debt, keeping them from accomplishing the public work we need them to do,” says Erin. “Having LRAP in our planned giving is the best way to ensure that public interest attorneys will defend the environment long into the future.”