elizabeth root memorial scholarship

Elizabeth Root was a certified paralegal with over 40 years of experience. A long-time, honored member of OCPA, Elizabeth served as a Director, Editor and contributing writer for the Compendium.  She assisted in the planning of, and contributed her expertise to OCPA’s Annual Educational Conference from 2005 to 2010.  She served as the Ethics Chair and on the Mentor Committee, co-chairing its Student Career Conference and was the MCLE Compliance Coordinator for a number of years. She continuously promoted continuing education, career development, and professional recognition for paralegals. She was awarded OCPA’s Lifetime Achievement award in 2012 and NALA’s Affiliated Association Award in 2013 for her dedication to the paralegal profession. Elizabeth passed away on December 26, 2013 and is remembered as a consummate professional, a distinguished paralegal and a good friend to many.

In recognition of her dedicated service to OCPA and the advancement of the paralegal profession, OCPA established the Elizabeth Root Memorial Scholarship.

One (1) scholarship, valued at $500.00, will be awarded to one (1) paralegal or one (1) paralegal student, provided such student did not receive an OCPA student scholarship during the calendar same year, for reimbursement of paralegal education, seminars, meetings, OCPA membership or fees for certifications (example: the NALA certified paralegal ("CP") exam or preparation classes), or the advanced certification ("ACP") exam. Qualified applicants are asked to complete the Applicant Information Sheet and Essay and submit via email to the OCPA Scholarship Committee at scholarship@ocparalegal.org by TBDAll Essays submitted will be considered by the OCPA Scholarship Committee using the Essay Judging Criteria listed below. If the OCPA Scholarship Committee deems no qualified winners, no scholarship will be awarded. The awards ceremony will be held TBD 

  • Eligibility:  Scholarship applicants must be members of the Orange County Paralegal Association.
  • Deadline for submissionTBD
  • Essay Guidelines

Elizabeth embraced her career and championed professional ethics, professional development, and shared her education and experience to give a hand up to other paralegals.

Answer the following question in 500-700 words:

How will you use your paralegal education and experience to lend a hand up to others?
  • Submission Guidelines: 
    • Submit completed entry packet (essay and application form) as an email with attachments to scholarship@ocparalegal.org by the deadline of 11:59 PM PST on November 8, 2021. Incomplete entries will be disqualified.
    • The essay should be attached as a Microsoft Word Document with the filename “LastName_FirstName OCPA essay” (Ex: “Smith_Jane OCPA essay.docx”).
    • The entry form should be filled out electronically or scanned as a PDF and saved with the filename “LastName_FirstName scholarship entry (Ex: “Smith_Jane scholarship entry.pdf”).
    • The Scholarship Committee will consider, in no particular order:
    • Did the response address all of the questions
    • Writing and grammar skills
    • Quality of the response

If you have any questions regarding the Elizabeth Root Memorial Scholarship, please contact the Scholarship Committee at scholarship@ocparalegal.org.

past scholarship recipients


 2015  Kayleen Lofgren
 Heather Thompson
 2016  Cristina Gutierrez
 Amera Hajali
 2017  Jack Levi Orman
 Connie Mao

 2021 Margaret McFarlane

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