Bill Bogaard, ’65, moved to Los Angeles after graduating from Michigan Law and joined O’Melveny & Myers LLP, where he worked on securities and finance transactions. He continued in private practice for nearly 20 years before joining First Interstate Bancorp, where he served as executive vice president and general counsel until the company merged with Wells Fargo in the late 1990s. Bogaard then spent time as a visiting professor at Michigan Law and at the University of Southern California Law School. Bogaard was elected mayor of Pasadena, California, in 1999 and served four four-year terms. In 1996, Bogaard and his wife, Claire, established a scholarship fund to support Law School students in need of financial assistance.
Alexandra “Ally” Card is a recipient of the William J. and Claire W. Bogaard Endowed Scholarship and is expected to graduate in 2024. Now in her 2L year, she looks forward to exploring various areas of law in addition to the doctrinal work. Card recently completed a summer clerkship with Public Counsel, a pro bono law firm based in Los Angeles. During her clerkship, she was placed on the Audrey Irmas Project for Women and Girls’ Rights, a division of the firm that works to advance worker justice and education equity through direct legal services, policy advocacy, impact litigation, and community education. Part of Card’s role was to complete civil procedure research for a case involving intimate partner violence. After Law School, she plans to pursue a career in Big Law and hopes to specialize in intellectual property cases at a firm in Los Angeles.
Bill: I was determined, sort of intuitively, to study further before getting into a field of work. My undergraduate studies were focused on English literature and philosophy. Law school was attractive to me as an opportunity to get a graduate degree and to benefit from that degree for the rest of my career in fields that I would be interested in.
I chose Michigan because it was and is outstanding! I grew up in Iowa. As I applied for law school, I had been away from Iowa, except for short vacations, for six or seven years for college and military service. At that point, my wife and I had two children. I chose Michigan in part because it allowed us to spend some time closer to my family and let them enjoy our children.
Ally: I’ve wanted to be a lawyer since I was really young. I was always interested in history, and that evolved into an interest in law and advocacy. Going to Michigan Law is meaningful to me as it has given me the chance to immerse myself in a special legal community where I have been able to find other individuals passionate about the same legal issues as I am. I chose Michigan because it was a natural fit for me as a U-M undergraduate alumna and native Michigander, and being in the environment that the Law School creates is really conducive to my type of learning and growth.
Bill: As I started law school, I thought that it would be interesting to work in the field of international law. I enrolled in Professor William Bishop’s class on international law and enjoyed it very much, and I took another course from Professor Eric Stein, who also taught in the field of international law. I’ve had only limited opportunities to be involved in international transactions, but I’ve always treasured my studies in the international field.
Ally: I’ve only taken doctrinal classes so far, but I think my favorite class has been Constitutional Law with Professor Julian Mortenson. I love being a part of classes that foster a collective and open atmosphere, while creating connection and space for growth within the legal field.
Bill: My wife and I had one child when I started law school. Our second child was born in Ann Arbor when I was a second-year law student. My activities at the Law School were fairly limited to my courses until I had the opportunity to serve on the editorial board of the Michigan Law Review.
Ally: I work for the International Institute on campus in their Latin American and Caribbean Studies Center, helping with project development work. Also, I am part of the Student Sexual Assault and Harassment Legal Advocacy Service, a pro bono project that focuses on providing guidance to students who’ve experienced sexual assault.
Bill: I most remember studying in the Reading Room. With a family at home, having a quiet place to study was important. I consider it a sacred place where important work takes place.
Ally: The Reading Room is the place where I can focus best, and it’s just so pretty—I like to take that in while I’m studying. I used to walk through and study on the Law Quad as an undergrad. I would marvel at the interactions amongst faculty and students, so now being on the opposite end of the Reading Room actively participating in the Law School community has given me a special appreciation for it.
Bill: I never forget the boost that legal education gave to me in achieving a life that has been tremendously interesting and rewarding in terms of working with talented people and handling complicated problems. My legal education also aided in my public service as mayor, serving the needs of the community. I am tremendously grateful. My wife and I like the idea of giving young people the opportunity that they might not otherwise have to get an education at Michigan Law and to benefit for the rest of their lives by the results of that kind of experience. I like the idea that it’s a contribution to young people that lasts a long, long time.
Ally: This scholarship has provided me the ability to participate in law school more fully as it has alleviated a part of the significant financial burden required to attend. I feel supported in my studies, and I am able to envision a future that isn’t shaped by significant student debt. I appreciate the significance of an alumnus giving in a way that is so generous to me, and it cements my understanding of the Law School as a caring and supportive community even after graduation. As a recipient, I know how impactful this giving can be and hope to be able to help others in the future.