Grassbaugh Veterans Project
The Captain Jonathan D. Grassbaugh Veterans Project at the Moritz College of Law helps veterans and their immediate family members who may find themselves in need of legal assistance in the areas of housing and consumer issues. Housing matters that the Project handles include landlord-tenant issues, evictions, and foreclosure. Consumer issues that the Project handles include creditor/debtor and credit agency disputes, as well as assisting in cases involving relief from default judgment. Assistance is provided to veterans and their immediate family members at no cost and by volunteer lawyers and Moritz students selected and trained to work with veterans and their immediate family members on these issues.
Thousands of Ohio veterans and military service members need legal services each year. They return home from tours of duty only to face seemingly insurmountable challenges – foreclosures, mushrooming problems with debt, issues with litigious landlords, and more. With inadequate resources to hire attorneys themselves and limited aid available through public interest law programs, those working closely with the veteran and military communities recognized that a great need is going unmet.
One alumna from The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law is changing that.
Jenna C. Grassbaugh ’14, a veteran, and a Gold Star wife whose amazing story of service and generosity is inspiring others across the country to donate to an initiative personal to her on many levels: the Captain Jonathan D. Grassbaugh Veterans Project.
The Project pairs veterans with Moritz College of Law students who can assist in landlord-tenant disputes, foreclosures, Rule 60 default judgment, and debt crises. Practicing attorneys volunteer their time to supervise the students’ work.
Grassbaugh donated the seed money to start the project, using insurance funds she received following the death of her husband, CPT Jonathan D. Grassbaugh, who was killed by a roadside bomb in Zaganiyah, Iraq on April 7, 2007.
She hopes others will match her gift, enabling 2,000 hours of free legal services to be provided annually.
“I wanted to find a project that would have some sort of long-lasting legacy – something that Jon would truly approve of and worthy of that money,” Grassbaugh said. “It didn’t seem right to buy something with it. I wanted to do something worthwhile.”