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News Release

Vermont Law and Graduate School Receives $2.5 Million Gift from the Maverick Lloyd Foundation

Wednesday, July 26, 2023


VLGS’s Vermont School for the Environment to be Renamed Maverick Lloyd School for the Environment

Vermont Law and Graduate School (VLGS) announces a $2.5 million gift from the Maverick Lloyd Foundation. To recognize this transformational gift, VLGS will change the name of its Vermont School for the Environment to the Maverick Lloyd School for the Environment. The funds will further VLGS’s overall non-profit mission to expand its world-renowned environmental law and master’s degree programs.

The Maverick Lloyd School for the Environment offers specialized master's degrees in environmental policy, building on the long history of environmental law expertise at VLGS. Degrees at the School offer a transformative educational experience, putting issues of climate change and environmental justice at the forefront. “We are honored by this demonstration of support for the work we do to prepare students to solve the complex challenges facing our communities and planet,” said Maverick Lloyd School for the Environment Dean Jennifer Rushlow. “The need for leadership in climate and environmental policy is more urgent than ever, and our programs provide critical tools for future leaders to effect bold and meaningful change.”

Arthur Berndt is the owner of Maverick Farm in Sharon, Vermont, a nearby maple syrup producer. Arthur and his daughter, Lorna Adley, serve as co-trustees of the Maverick Lloyd Foundation, which is committed to creating a more equitable world and supports innovative projects that will help build a non-violent, just and sustainable future.

“This is the ideal time for the Maverick Lloyd Foundation to deepen its support of Vermont Law and Graduate School,” Berndt said. “We’re living amidst an undeniable climate crisis — witness the record-breaking heat in the West, the floods in Vermont and endless violent and unusual weather around the world. We have continuously bent Mother Nature to our will, and we’re experiencing the results. We urgently need to change course, to support policies and principles that will promote a livable future. Vermont Law and Graduate School graduates will gain the skills and experience to become catalysts for the changes we need.”

“The Maverick Lloyd Foundation has been a stalwart supporter of Vermont Law and Graduate School’s environmental programs for the past decade, and we are grateful to Arthur and Lorna for this historic gift and their commitment to furthering our school’s mission,” said VLGS President Rod Smolla.

VLGS’s Maverick Lloyd School for the Environment offers master’s degrees in climate and environmental policy, energy regulation and law, food and agriculture law and animal protection policy. The school also houses several centers and institutes, including the Animal Law and Policy Institute, the Center for Agriculture and Food Systems, the Environmental Advocacy Clinic, the Environmental Justice Clinic, the Institute for Energy and the Environment and the U.S.-Asia Partnerships for Environmental Law.


About Vermont Law and Graduate School: Vermont Law and Graduate School, a private, independent institution, is home to a Law School that offers ABA-accredited residential and online hybrid JD programs and a Graduate School that offers master’s degrees and certificates in multiple disciplines, including programs offered by the Maverick Lloyd School for the Environment, the Center for Justice Reform and other graduate-level programs emphasizing the intersection of environmental justice, social justice and public policy. Both the Law and Graduate Schools strongly feature experiential clinical and field work learning. For more information, visit vermontlaw.eduFacebookTwitter, and Instagram.