Maria D. Villa '86

Partner, Villa and Lathrop

Maria Villa was the first Hispanic attorney to be the vice president and treasurer of the Board of Governors of the State Bar of California. She also served as chair of the Stakeholder Relations Committee for the State Bar, and is a founding fellow of the State Bar Foundation. Villa is a member and former president of the Mexican-American Bar Association of Los Angeles County, founder of the Latina Lawyers Bar Association and formerly deputy regional president of the Hispanic National Bar Association.

Yet what Villa and husband Steve Lathrop `86 are most proud of, aside from their son Michael and their successful practice (Villa and Lathrop) is a scholarship she and her husband created at Loyola Law, the Maria D. Villa Scholarship. Villa and Lathrop endowed this scholarship to ease the financial burden of at least one deserving student a year, and to set an example for other firms that such an endowment is feasible and practical--and necessary to promote excellence in the legal profession.