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University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law - Summer 2013

By Joanna Corman A gift on wheels Lobbyist Mike Belote, ’87, discusses the importance of supporting his alma mater What inspires you to support the law school? One night I saw Dean Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker at a restaurant in Sacramento and introduced myself. I was so impressed by her commitment and passion. She talked about the Public Legal Services Society PLSS, which struck me as a worthy way for students to not only get practical legal work but also help their communities. So I chose this as an area to be involved in. What is PLSS? It’s a student-run organization that gives grants to students to work in public legal jobs, often serving underserved communities. It is an important part of how McGeorge reaches out to the community. You recently created the Mike Belote Capital Center Endowment. How will your gift help the McGeorge community? I decided to sell a car I had stored and create a secure funding source for a program I want to see succeed. My gift will support the Capital Center’s Lecture Series. Why is it important for you to support these activities? I think you get to a stage in your career when you know that it’s time to give back. People invest a lot of time and money in law school, and being there to support them is important to me. You were a lobbyist before you went to McGeorge. Why did you decide law school would be useful? Legal training is a huge benefit for anyone working with legislation and lobbying. Not only does it help in understanding cases and statutes, it’s a way to think, a way to argue and a way to write. I have an affinity for anything involving talking and writing, and law school has clearly been a benefit to my career. What do you find rewarding about your work? I joined California Advocates, a contract lobbying firm, in 1990 and I’ve been with them ever since. I make arguments just like lawyers do in a courtroom, only I do it in the Capitol, and I do it to a legislative committee instead of a jury. Influencing the outcome of legislation is very, very rewarding. Mike Belote, ’87, with the Aston Martin he sold to establish an endowment for the Capital Center. 60 summer 20 1 3 s t e v e y e at e r The Last Word


University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law - Summer 2013
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