Bart Slabbekorn (’01)

Category: Alumni Promise | Awards

2021 Alumni Promise Award Winner

Lieutenant Colonel Bart Slabbekorn graduated in 2001 after serving as president of the Phi Alpha Delta pre-law fraternity. That role foreshadowed his career, in which he has become a leading legal expert, especially regarding military law.

Early in his career, Slabbekorn was recognized as Defense Counsel of the Year by the Western Regional Defense Counsel. The award came in 2007 as a result of his representation of more than 200 Marines and Sailors in courts-martial at Camp Pendleton.

Soon after, Slabbekorn took his legal knowledge overseas, working in Iraq to establish the rule of law in towns like Al Fallujah and Ar Ramadi. Upon return to the United States, he was selected for the Marine Corps Special Education Program for Environmental Law, earning a Master of Laws from Georgetown University. He served for three years as special counsel for environmental law to protect Marine Corps investments in renewable energy and other programs to reduce environmental impact.

Other legal areas have benefited from Slabbekorn’s expertise, including the fight to end military sexual assault. While serving as senior trial counsel at Camp Pendleton, he held numerous offenders accountable and raised awareness of the issue. Also in California, he served at the Veterans Legal Clinic at the University of San Diego, handling and supervising civil litigation suits against for-profit institutions that had deceived veterans with poor education programs.

More recently, Slabbekorn served as an assistant United States attorney in the Eastern District of Tennessee, working with a dedicated team to address violent crime, financial fraud, and national security threats throughout East Tennessee. In 2019, he returned to the Department of the Navy as a civilian attorney advisor in San Diego, California. He is the Department of the Navy’s lead attorney for addressing historical environmental impacts at closed Navy bases and former Navy facilities as part of the Base Realignment and Closure Program.

Many awards have been bestowed upon Slabbekorn. He has twice received the Navy-Marine Corps Commendation Medal. He also received the Meritorious Service Medal for his work as special counsel for environmental law. In 2017, he was recognized with the US Counsel of Inspectors General Award for Investigation Excellence.