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Recognizing Public Servants Scholarship Winners

The Recognizing Public Servants Scholarship was created by David Benowitz as a community engagement program to increase awareness for public servants and the important role they play in their community. Our team is honored to assist students in the pursuit of their higher education through this financial award.

Applications are currently being accepted for the 2023  award and can be submitted by visiting our scholarship page.

2022 Winner: Kelly Heilman

About Kelly: Kelly is originally from New Jersey, but has spent a lot of time traveling to ultimately find her forever home in San Diego, California, where she completed a gap year in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps before law school. Kelly always had a passion for law, philosophy, and theology, and has brought those passions to fruition at Notre Dame Law School, where she is completing her final semester in the United Kingdom. During law school, Kelly sat on the boards for St. Thomas More Society and Intellectual Property Law Society, while completing her summers at the U.S. Court of Federal Claims and the DOJ. She is now a published author on an intellectual property piece and will be pursuing this line of work in California after graduation. In her free time, you can find Kelly at the gym, listening to electronic dance music with her best friend, or getting involved with her church community.

Reaction Statement:”I am delighted to be considered worthy of this scholarship. I am so honored to be chosen as this year’s recipient and I hope to make everyone proud, especially as the Bar Exam approaches! All my life, I only ever sought to create the future I have in order to bring love and joy to others. Thank you for supporting this mission of mine! It will be a tremendous help”.

2021 Winner: Irena Petryk

Irena PetrykAbout Irena: Irena Petryk is a junior at Northwestern University majoring in economics and international studies. Irena is interested in foreign relations and has interned at the Center for International Private Enterprise, the US Agency for International Development, and the Department of State. She sits on the associate board of a non-profit that promotes women’s education in West Africa and co-founded her school’s Ukrainian Club. On campus, she assists local non-profits through consulting projects and works as a research assistant for the Global Poverty Research Lab. In her free time, Irena enjoys baking, biking, and listening to This American Life.

Reaction Statement: “I’m incredibly honored to receive David Benowitz’s Recognizing Public Servants Scholarship! Receiving the scholarship lightens my financial burden and allows me to focus on my studies and pursue opportunities that broaden my horizons. Thank you for your generosity and support.”

2020 Winner: Kaitlyn McGlothlen

“I am originally from a town in Eastern Washington but ventured out West to attend school at the University of Washington. Originally, I studied psychology and philosophy with the intent to become a juvenile defense attorney. I traveled and competed for UW’s Mock Trial team, participated in a program introducing Philosophy to students across South Seattle called Philosophy for Children, and was an intern with the Department of Corrections. However, I ultimately felt pulled towards education and wished to make a difference in student’s lives. Currently I am a graduate student at Central Washington University, working towards being a high school ELL teacher. Although venturing away from law and towards a different form of public service, I still coach the University of Washington’s Mock Trial Team and plan to introduce my high school students to the field of law.

I am so grateful for this opportunity which will help me further my education. Juggling the cost of school nowadays can be incredibly overwhelming, but this scholarship will help me deal with that burden. My ultimate goal is to uplift and empower my community, one student at a time. This helps me do that, and I am so thankful!”

Previous Scholarship Winner Admitted to Michigan State Bar

Former recipient of the David Benowitz “Recognizing Public Servant Scholarship,” Husnah Khan, was sworn in to the State Bar of Michigan on May 15, 2020. Husnah received the scholarship as a third-year student at Wayne State University Law School where she studied to pursue a legal career working in public service.

The “Recognizing Public Servant Scholarship” was founded by David Benowitz in hopes of encouraging others to pursue public service and to give them the opportunity to express their thoughts on the critical role that public servants play not only in our legal system and communities. Awarded each year to only one student in the nation, Husnah’s work embodies the dedication to public service that David encourages, specifically her desire to work in overturning wrongful convictions.

Husnah’s motion for admission to the State Bar of Michigan came from Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Amy Ronayne Krause, who’s first contact with Husnah came when congratulating her for receiving the scholarship. Judge Krause has previously commended Husnah for her academic and internship success, and has defined her to be a true public servant.

During her time at Wayne State University Law School, Husnah actively participated in The Journal of Law in Society as an editor, the Muslim Law Students Association as President, and the American Bar Association Law Student Division as Lieutenant Governor of Public Interest.

David, on behalf of the whole team here at the firm, is proud to see her being admitted to the State Bar of Michigan and looks forward to seeing what she will accomplish in her work in public service.

2019 Winner: Mita Ramani

Mita Ramani is originally from the suburbs of Chicago and is currently a senior at the University of Notre Dame, studying Economics and Philosophy in the Glynn Family Honors Program. At Notre Dame, Mita has been involved with the Notre Dame Mock Trial Association, Student Government Executive Cabinet, the South Asian Student Association, and Women in Politics, to name a few. Next year she hopes to attend law school at the University of Virginia to learn how she can make a difference in her community in the future.

“I am incredibly grateful and blessed to have received this scholarship. Paying for law school is a great challenge so this scholarship will go a long way for helping with books and tuition. I am so excited to be the individual chosen for the Public Servants Scholarship and hope to be a public servant to my community in the future!!”

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