Cate Byrne ’25 awarded Edward Lee Elmore Summer Fellowship in Public Interest Law

The Edward Lee Elmore Summer Fellowship in Public Interest Law at the University of Texas School of Law funds a student to work with a capital defense office. The fellowship was created in honor of Edward Lee Elmore, a former death row inmate in South Carolina who gained his freedom after thirty years, by a generous gift from one of his attorneys, Diana Holt ’94. The William Wayne Justice Center for Public Interest Law administers the fellowship in conjunction with the law school’s Summer Public Service Program.

The 2023 fellowship has been awarded to rising second-year student Catherine (Cate) Byrne, who will spend the summer with the Capital Habeas Unit of the Federal Community Defender Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Byrne will work on habeas corpus, executive clemency, and other post-conviction proceedings and help prepare federal appellate briefs.

At the law school, Byrne has volunteered for the Mithoff Pro Bono Program’s Expunction Project, Immigration Project, Gender Affirmation, and Project Parole Project (as team leader), and helped organize the 2023 Getting Radical in the South student-led conference (GRITS). Byrne is a member of the Environmental Law Society, the Public Defense Group, the Public Interest Law Association, and OUTLaw, and is a staff editor of the Texas Journal on Civil Liberties & Civil Rights.