ORANGE, Calif. – Chapman University’s Alona Cortese Elder Law Center has received a $100,000 grant from the Archstone Foundation. The grant will be paid over two years to the twelve-year-old program for the elderly, which was initially launched with seed money from the Archstone Foundation.

“Since inception, the Alona Cortese Elder Law Center has become a vital resource for Orange County seniors in need,” noted School of Law Dean Tom Campbell. “This generous donation will enable faculty to equip students with skills and training that are cornerstones to success, both in law school and in practice,” said Campbell.

The Alona Cortese Elder law Center has represented elderly clients on issues ranging from wills and durable powers of attorney, to physical abuse and financial scams and conservatorships. Referrals come in from all over the county, including the Public Law Center, Legal Aid, Adult Protective Services, social workers, and professionals in the court system.

“The Alona Cortese Elder Law Center offers both an invaluable experience for law students and a tremendous source of support and services for vulnerable individuals who can’t afford the high costs of private representation,” said Kurt Eggert, director of the Alona Cortese Elder Law Center.

The Alona Cortese Elder Law Center continues to increase the number of cases it handles compared with prior years. There are between seven and 10 law students each semester who work the cases. Director Kurt Eggert and Professor Sandra Skahen work intensively with the students to develop their skills in assisting clients with their legal issues.

The number of elderly has grown in Orange County with the first wave of baby boomers hitting retirement age. While there were fewer than 300,000 Orange County residents who were 65 years or older in 2000, that number is expected to exceed 500,000 by 2020—rising to more than 14 percent of the total population of Orange County.

Having earned a Top Schools ranking in U.S. News and World Report, ABA accredited Chapman University School of Law is a forum where diverse and highly accomplished faculty members provide students with a combination of personalized traditional legal instruction and real-world skills training as well as multiple opportunities with clinics, externships, internships, competitions, and pro bono work. Chapman is an ABA-accredited law school located in Orange County, CA, known for its excellent faculty, friendly atmosphere and personalized education.

Consistently ranked among the top universities in the West, Chapman University provides a uniquely personalized and interdisciplinary educational experience to highly qualified students. Our programs encourage innovation, creativity and collaboration, and focus on developing global citizen-leaders who are distinctively prepared to improve their community and their world. Visit

Established in 1986, Archstone Foundation is a private, non-profit foundation whose mission is to prepare society for the growing needs of an aging population. Under the leadership of president and CEO Joseph F. Prevratil, J.D., Archstone grants up to $5 million annually, primarily in Southern California.


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