UCI Law First-Year Student Claire Foster Honored for Efforts Assisting a Voter on Election Day


Claire Foster

IRVINE, Calif. (Jan 11, 2023) — Disability Rights California presented Claire Foster, a first-year student at University of California, Irvine School of Law (UCI Law), with the inaugural award for Outstanding Service to Voters with Disabilities for her work in helping a voter complete voter registration and cast her vote on Election Day in November 2022. The other recipients of the award for outstanding service to voters with disabilities include the San Mateo County Registration & Elections Division, Orange County Registrar of Voters’ Office, Phil Verbera, Manager of Community and Voter Outreach at the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder & County Clerk’s Office, and Charles Evans, Supervising Attorney at Asian Americans Advancing Justice Southern California.

Claire was working as part of a UCI Law pro bono project with Asian Americans Advancing Justice Southern California, and the supervising attorney on the project, Charles Evans, also received an award for his work. Claire’s tremendous achievement is detailed in this award announcement:

We thank and applaud Claire for her election-related volunteerism generally and for saying “yes” when asked by Charles Evans on the early evening of Election Day if she could assist with this more-complicated-than-usual situation. Claire jumped in while some of the details of the plan were still being finalized, navigating rush-hour traffic to pick up the necessary election materials from a nearby vote center and then go to the voter’s home. She demonstrated flexibility and persistence in the face of numerous obstacles, and she managed to get back to the vote center to submit the voter’s ballot selections just before the vote center closed. Charles said later that, while he had volunteers lined up to provide help directly to voters, this situation was the “most extreme” one he saw during the November 2022 election in terms of the extent of assistance one of his volunteers was called on to provide; as such, he wholeheartedly agreed with us that Claire deserved this special recognition.

I'm so grateful for UCI Law and our fantastic Pro Bono Program because I can help members of our community while gaining invaluable legal experience. - Claire Foster, 1L

"I was very surprised and humbled by this recognition because, from my perspective, I only helped one person cast her ballot,” said Claire Foster. “In order to ensure justice and fairness in our legal system and beyond, I believe that small actions can lead to large effects, which is why I said 'yes' when my Pro Bono supervisor [Charles Evans] called me on Election Night. I'm so grateful for UCI Law and our fantastic Pro Bono Program because I can help members of our community while gaining invaluable legal experience.” 

“My favorite part about my law school experience so far has been participating in the Pro Bono Program,” continued Claire. “In my first semester alone, I worked with seven different organizations for more than 30 hours helping provide legal aid to several underserved populations in California. I hope to be able to commit more of my time this semester to Pro Bono by taking on semester-long projects and going on an Alternative Spring Break Pro Bono trip.”

About the University of California, Irvine School of Law

The University of California, Irvine School of Law is a top, visionary law school that provides an innovative and comprehensive curriculum, prioritizes public service, and demonstrates a commitment to diversity within the legal profession. UCI Law students have completed more than 135,000 hours of pro bono work since 2009. Forty-eight percent of UCI Law's J.D. graduates are people of color. At UCI Law, we are driven to improve our local, national, and global communities by grappling with important issues as scholars, as practitioners, and as teachers who are preparing the next generation of leaders. The collaborative and interdisciplinary community at UCI Law includes extraordinary students, world-renowned faculty, dedicated staff, engaged alumni and enthusiastic supporters. More information on UCI Law is available here. Please follow us on Twitter @UCILaw, Facebook @UCIrvineLaw and Instagram @ucilaw.

Link: Disability Rights California Presents Its Inaugural Awards for Outstanding Service to Voters with Disabilities | Disability Rights California

Link: OC Register story

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