Community and connection at the center of incoming 1L’s law school priorities

“An opportunity to create positive change in the lives of others and have a direct positive impact in shaping public policy is what I’m most excited about,” Coty Brown said. “Through working to advocate for change in my career, I’ve seen firsthand that advancing issues pertaining to civil liberties is often not only a legal matter. It requires collaboration between individuals from across different industries, disciplines, backgrounds, and areas of expertise, being willing to engage, connect, and learn from one another. When that happens, the opportunities to advance and empower communities in comprehensive, lasting, and meaningful ways become endless. I hope to be part of helping facilitate that kind of change.”

Portrait of Coty Brown
Coty Brown

Brown is one of two Alfond Ambassadors in Maine Law’s incoming Class of 2026. The ambassadorship program is part of a graduate scholarship initiative, funded by the Harold Alfond Foundation, that brings together students from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines.

In addition to forging connections across disciplines, Brown is also looking forward to diving into the Maine Law community, which was a major reason she chose the school.

“Finding a welcoming place with a wealth of diverse ideas and perspectives was incredibly important to me,” Brown said. “I also like that Maine Law has so many non-traditional students, especially as someone who has had the first leg of their career.”

Brown received her BA from The University of George Washington where she studied business and marketing. After graduation, she worked with several organizations within Washington D.C., focusing on issues of civil rights and public policy. Most recently, Brown served as Director of Digital Communications with the U.S. Small Business Association.

This experience in civil rights advocacy and public policy prompted Brown’s interest in law school.

“At some point I realized I wanted to do more, to have a direct impact,  around the issues that I care so much about,” Brown said. “Law school feels like the natural progression of my career.”

Brown feels most passionately about issues pertaining to  civil rights and civil liberties and, more specifically, plans to work to advance women’s rights. She hopes Maine Law will afford her new experiences, perspectives, and connections that will allow her to engage in meaningful advocacy around these issues.

Already, Brown feels connected to Maine Law and her future profession, largely by way of the school’s mentorship program.

“One thing I noticed early on about Maine Law is how much they care about each student, individually. Taking the time to match me with the perfect mentor is just one example of that. The mentorship has been incredibly helpful in the lead-up to the semester,” Brown continued. “Having someone to connect with, who can give you great advice is honestly invaluable.”

As for Portland, Brown said it already feels like home. Between the food scene downtown and seemingly unlimited outdoor adventures, she has no concerns about filling her spare time.

“I love it here,” Brown confessed. “It feels like a place I’ve lived before, Portland feels like home.”