Mercer Law claims 13th annual Georgia Legal Food Frenzy championship

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Mercer Law administration, Middle Georgia Food Bank administration, and two Mercer Law students stand on the law school's front porch holding the Law School Legal Food Frenzy Attorney General's Cup
From left, Mercer Law School Assistant Dean of Students Jeannie Zipperer, Middle Georgia Food Bank CEO Kathy McCollum, Michaela Manley, Jack Wareham, Middle Georgia Food Bank Director of Marketing Kayla Durham and School of Law Dean Karen Sneddon. Photo by Mary Ann Howard

Mercer University School of Law earned the Attorney General’s Cup and reclaimed its title as champion of the 13th annual Georgia Legal Food Frenzy, an eight-day, intrastate law school competition to help support food banks in Georgia. Nearly half of this year’s donations were raised by Mercer Law. The proceeds of more than $15,000 from Mercer’s team went to Middle Georgia Community Food Bank. This is the ninth time Mercer Law has won the title. 

Spearheaded by Mercer Law Student Bar Association Community Outreach Chairs Michaela Manley, ’25, and Jack Wareham, ’25, the Mercer Law team took the first place title from the University of Georgia School of Law, which won the award last year and came in second this year. Emory School of Law and Georgia State University College of Law also had teams competing in the student drive. Teams promoted their efforts using LinkedIn videos, gained points by holding volunteer days at their regional food banks, and publicized their achievements on social media. 

“This entire experience has been nothing short of an absolute pleasure. It is both an honor and a privilege to have been able to lead my peers in bringing this trophy back to Mercer where it belongs,” Wareham said. “I am incredibly humbled by the difference the Mercer Law community was able to make. To be recognized at King & Spalding (law firm) was something I will never forget, and I am so thankful for Michaela, my fellow Mercer Law students and Feeding Georgia for providing me with an opportunity to make such a significant impact in our great state.”

Georgia law students raised more than 40% over last year, garnering about $35,000, or about 140,000 meals, according to Law.com Daily Report.

“The dedication and enthusiasm displayed by Georgia’s law schools in the 2024 Legal Food Frenzy are truly inspiring,” said Danah Craft, executive director of Feeding Georgia. “Their efforts have made a tangible impact in the fight against hunger, providing direct support to our regional food banks.”

A female student and a male student holding a trophy in an office lobby
Michaela Manley and Jack Wareham receive the Law School Legal Food Frenzy trophy at King and Spalding in Atlanta.

Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr agreed, saying that his office, which is a co-sponsor of the annual event with the State Bar of Georgia Young Lawyers Division, was grateful to future lawyers for their invaluable contributions. He commended their dedication to ending hunger in the state.

Last year’s Legal Food Frenzy drew more than 14,000 participants raising a total of $829,239, or the equivalent of more than 3.2 million meals for Georgians experiencing food insecurity. Since its inception in 2012, Georgia Legal Food Frenzy has raised $5.9 million, or the equivalent of 20 million meals, for the state’s nine regional food banks and their partner agencies and faith-based organizations. Annually, they distribute more than 205 million pounds of food across the state. The goal for this year’s competition was to raise $1 million. The final total has not been announced yet.

Manley said it was an honor to lead the Legal Food Frenzy fundraiser efforts at Mercer Law and connect students with individuals and organizations that deeply impact the community.

“The Legal Food Frenzy shines a light on our neighbors in need and how severe food insecurity is for families and individuals in Middle Georgia,” she said. “The way Mercer Law came together is an example of how dedicated the students are to service and to helping those in need.”

Mercer Law Assistant Dean of Student Affairs Jeannie Zipperer commended the Mercer team on reclaiming the top spot for Mercer Law in the Georgia Legal Food Frenzy.

“Their dedication and hard work truly paid off with $15,407 raised to address food insecurity,” she said. “This accomplishment is a testament to Michaela’s and Jack’s exceptional leadership and the thoughtfulness with which they executed this entirely student-led initiative.”