Angel investors Scott and Cyan Banister have given $125,000 to support UCLA School of Law’s First Amendment Amicus Brief Clinic. The clinic, launched in fall 2013, will be named the Scott & Cyan Banister First Amendment Clinic in recognition of the gift.
Under the direction of UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh, one of the nation’s leading First Amendment scholars, the clinic gives students real-world experience writing friend-of-the-court briefs in state and federal cases. The briefs cover a wide range of free speech and religious freedom questions, both under the First Amendment and related statutes. The clinic has so far filed 20 briefs on behalf of nonprofits such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, the Student Press Law Center, the ACLU of Virginia, the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty and the Cato Institute.
Scott Banister is best known as a co-founder of IronPort, an email appliance provider that was bought by Cisco in 2007, and as an early advisor and board member at PayPal, where he co-invented the “email payments” feature. Banister has also long been interested in law and how it can affect innovation and freedom, including especially the freedom of speech.