Athens Justice Project plants tree to honor Louise McBee

Athens Justice Project plants tree to honor Louise McBee

Athens, Ga. – The Athens Justice Project has thanked former state Rep. Louise McBee for her long-time support by planting a tree in her honor on the University of Georgia North Campus.

The AJP planted a willow oak in McBee’s honor between the UGA Chapel and Demosthenian Hall. A ceremony will be held at the tree March 30 at 2 p.m. to unveil a plaque thanking McBee for her “leadership, integrity and caring.” UGA President Michael F. Adams, AJP Director Deborah Gowen and Clarke County Probate Judge Susan Tate will speak.

McBee, a retired UGA vice president, served on the AJP board of directors for seven years and helped secure funding for the program from the General Assembly. She also served on the AJP program development committee.

“Louise has always been a strong source of support for the Athens Justice Project,” said Gowen. “Her knowledge of the state and the community made her an extremely valuable member of the board of directors and we are proud that she continues to advocate for us to this day.”

The Athens Justice Project helps low-income people who are facing criminal charges and need legal representation, counseling, treatment for health and addiction problems and other social services. The AJP works to enable clients to achieve a fair legal outcome and become law-abiding, productive members of the community.

McBee joined the AJP board in 1998, a month after the steering committee that created the organization converted to a board of directors, and served until 2005.

She represented Clarke County in the General Assembly from 1991 until she retired from politics in 2004. She was chair of the House Higher Education Committee in her final term..

McBee joined UGA in 1963 and held a number of administrative positions, retiring in 1988 as acting vice president for academic affairs. The University System of Georgia Board of Regents later designated her vice president emeritus for academic affairs. Last year the University System of Georgia Foundation gave her its Lifetime Achievement Award and she has received numerous other honors including the Governor’s Award in the Humanities.