A $300,000 legal defense fund for education has been established in Alaska in honor of a 1975 graduate of the Columbus School of Law.
The Howard S. Trickey Constitutional Defense Fund was established by the Citizens for the Educational Advancement of Alaska’s Children (CEAAC). A prominent Anchorage attorney, Trickey pursued and settled two long-lasting and significant lawsuits on the group’s behalf.
Filed seven years apart in 1997 and 2004, respectively, Kasayulie v. State and Moore v. State were both lodged against the state of Alaska, alleging funding inequities in the educational system that discriminated against struggling schools. Plaintiffs argued that state's method of funding capital projects for education violated the education clause and the equal protection clause of the Alaska Constitution and the implementing regulations of Title VI of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964.
After many years of litigation, the cases were settled in 2012. CEAAC received $500,000 in legal fee compensation from Alaska as part of the agreement. The group chose to honor Trickey’s long and successful advocacy by setting up a fund that bears his name.
The group says the new Trickey Constitutional Defense Fund will safeguard the future defense of the Alaska Constitution’s right to education.
“This fund will be saved permanently, for use, when needed, to stand up for the right to education in Alaska. It is our legal arsenal, one in which we hope we won’t need,” said CEAAC President Norm Eck.
Howard Trickey grew up in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. Today he practices at the law firm of Jermain Dunnagan & Owens in Anchorage, Alaska.