SM&P Supports the Veterans’ Court
“Giving back is essential to the well-being of a successful law firm, or any business,” said Mary Montgomery, SM&P founding and managing partner. “Our philosophy is well-served by providing personnel support to the Cobb County Veterans Accountability and Treatment Court (VTC). These veterans have offered up so much. We want to provide them what we can in return.”
The firm supports the court by donating the time and expertise of their client relations director, Victoria Turney, as a mentor to the court. Last month, Victoria, her fellow mentors, staff, 22 participants and graduates of the VCT program volunteered at MUST Ministries serving breakfast to more than 40 shelter residents. When asked about the impact of the efforts, VTC Program Coordinator Mike Boyd remarked that he saw our veterans live up to one of the military values carried by most all veterans — selfless service.
VTC’s mission is to rehabilitate veteran defendants whose lives have been spiraling out of control by diverting them from the traditional criminal justice system and providing them with tools to lead a productive and law-abiding lifestyle. Veterans are provided intensive case management and offered a chance to regain stability in their lives — employment if employable, housing if homeless, substance abuse and mental health treatment, if needed, through the VA, and an opportunity to strengthen their families. VTC also seeks to increase public safety by reducing recidivism and turn tax burdens into tax payers.
A critical aspect of the program is the addition of volunteer veteran mentors as part of the support team that encourages, guides, and motivates mentees to complete the 18-month treatment program. A trained and engaged veteran mentor develops an active and supportive relationship with the mentee, which increases the mentee’s chances of recovery.
VTC mentor and Marine veteran Victoria is also the treasurer of the Bravo Victor Fund, a 501 c 3 nonprofit which helps the court. “Some of these vets need emergency funds to pay for rent, utilities, travel, or other necessary expenses. Many do not have the resources to cover these expenses, especially when they first enter VTC,” she shared. “The Bravo Victor Fund was established to provide funds in these situations. It helps the participants stay the course and complete their program.”
Victoria has been an active member of the VTC for five years. She and the other mentors in the program give back directly to their brothers and sisters in arms. “It’s really a great feeling to help our vets who have lost their way and are now being successful and making the right decisions.”
“Supporting our community, especially our veterans, has been a long-time business model for Mary and the firm,” said Victoria. “It’s one of several reasons I am proud to represent the firm in this court and elsewhere.”