On October 12, 2021, the McGeorge School of Law announced that it would receive one of the largest gifts in the history of U.S. legal education. The gift, given by Eglet Adams’ Founding Partners Robert Eglet, a 1988 graduate of the McGeorge School of Law, and Tracy Eglet, will fund scholarships and support the school’s advocacy center.
The gift, which will be paid out over time, includes support of the school’s advocacy center with the bulk of the gift dedicated to scholarships for first-generation students and students of color. The gift is among the top 15 given to a U.S. law school, the third largest to a California law school and the second largest in the 170-year history of California’s first university.
“My wife and I both strongly believe that it is important to give back when you can,” Eglet said. “We are excited that we have the ability to help students who would not otherwise be able to afford law school. We both relied upon assistance throughout law school.”
The McGeorge School’s award-winning advocacy program will be renamed the Eglet Center for Advocacy and Dispute Resolution. The gift will create three new endowed faculty chairs for the center and a fund that will cover competition fees and travel costs for every qualified team interested in competing as a member of one of McGeorge’s mock trial, moot court, negotiations, or other competition teams.
“I am so proud of the nationally-ranked mock trial program at McGeorge,” Eglet said. “I have seen the students in action as they prepared for upcoming competitions, and I was really impressed. Trial law is my passion, and I want to do something that will enhance McGeorge’s mock trial program.”
The law school’s highly ranked competitions programs provide opportunities for students to improve their trial and appellate advocacy skills and refine their talents in client counseling, negotiations, and arbitration. In the past three years alone, a McGeorge student won the national Top Gun competition for the 16 top student trial lawyers; McGeorge tied for seventh in the country in the American Bar Association Competitions Championship; McGeorge’s negotiations team won the national and international ABA competitions; and McGeorge moot court students won 13 best advocate awards and six best brief awards. U.S. News & World Report ranks McGeorge No. 8 nationally in trial advocacy.
“I want to motivate McGeorge students to go into civil trial practice,” Eglet said. “If I can inspire even one student here to passionately pursue a career in civil trial practice, then I will have achieved my goal.”
University of the Pacific President Christopher Callahan called the gift “transformational” for the McGeorge School of Law. “This extraordinarily generous gift will change the lives of McGeorge students for generations to come,” Callahan said. “Robert and Tracy are amazing role models for all of us as they show the power philanthropy has to change the trajectory of the lives of students who are dedicating themselves to careers in the law.”
“The new need-based scholarships will help us address a systemic barrier to diversifying the law school and the profession, and the advocacy center fund will help cement the institution as a leader in trial advocacy, moot court, and legal education,” said Dean Michael Hunter Schwartz, who worked closely with the Eglets to design the gift.
The Eglet gift is the largest donation in the law school’s 97-year history. McGeorge will receive an additional $5 million in matching funds from Pacific’s Powell initiative, which matches gifts in excess of $50,000, dollar for dollar.
The Law Office of Eglet Adams
The Law Office of Eglet Adams has a long history of fighting for the interests of its injured clients. The firm has handled complex civil litigation against corporate titans which resulted in positive policy changes for consumers. Eglet Adams is currently serving as outside counsel for the State of Nevada and represents many of Nevada’s cities and counties in lawsuits against opioid manufacturers and distributors. The firm is taking on opioid manufacturers and distributors to recoup the costs of saving people’s lives from opioid use and overuse in Nevada.
Eglet Adams’ client-first mentality has enabled the firm to become one of the most successful and well-respected personal injury law firms in the State of Nevada and the United States. The firm obtained the largest catastrophic injury verdict in the country in 2010, as well as in 2013. It also obtained the three largest catastrophic injury verdicts in Nevada history totaling $524 million, $505 million and $186.2 million. Eglet Adams has been routinely named as one of the Most Influential Plaintiff Law Firms in the United States by the National Law Journal and was once again named such in 2020.
Robert Eglet, founding partner, is one of the nation’s most successful trial attorneys. Eglet has earned his clients more than $1.5 billion in verdicts and settlements in the past 10 years alone. He has served as lead trial counsel in more than 130 civil jury trials with only four losses.
Eglet is a recipient of the Thurgood Marshall Fighting for Justice Award for his tenacious effort against overwhelming odds and in achieving success in the fight for justice. He has been named one of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers in the United States by the National Trial Lawyers Association for 12 consecutive years and is a member of the Round Table, the 100 Most Influential Trial Lawyers in America. He was named National Lawyer of the Year in 2010 and National Trial Lawyer of the Year in 2013. He is a recipient of the National Law Journal’s “Keith Givens Visionary Award” for his work in achieving an $800 million settlement in the One October 2017, MGM mass shooting case and is the only lawyer to be named Nevada Trial Lawyer of the Year twice. In 2018, Eglet was invited to become a member of “The Inner Circle of Advocates”, an invitation-only group of the 100 best plaintiff trial lawyers in the United States. Eglet is currently the president of the National Trial Lawyers.
Tracy Eglet, also a founding partner of Eglet Adams, started her law career in 1993 in Ohio, then moved to Las Vegas in 1996 where she focused on injured persons in the areas of product defect and general negligence. Mrs. Eglet is regarded as one of the top negotiators in the Nevada legal community. She has been honored as one of The Top 100 Trial Lawyers by the National Trial Lawyers Association and is a longstanding member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum. Mrs. Eglet has settled hundreds of millions of dollars in catastrophic injury lawsuits, managed and mediated thousands of cases, and selected multiple juries that have returned verdicts in excess of $50 million dollars.