Summer of 2015
I will be working this summer to help low-income individuals obtain and maintain the benefits and resources that they need to survive, including but not limited to federal, state, and local-level programs. The Health & Welfare unit provides holistic legal services for free to low-income individuals in Alameda County, and provides additional services to those living with HIV/AIDS.
Shane Young, California’s Office of the State Public Defender
California’s Office of the State Public Defender (OSPD) represents inmates on death row in their direct appeals and habeas corpus proceedings. As a summer intern I will assist attorneys with legal research and appellate briefing. I am extremely grateful for the generous grant provided by the Berkeley Law Foundation, which has made it possible to continue helping those facing death, while living in the most expensive place in America.
Summer of 2014
I will be working to improve housing conditions for tenants by assisting the legal department to develop and research impact litigation. Some of the work I will be doing may include, performing legal research, interviewing clients for potential litigation, writing memos on legal issues affecting tenants in California, drafting declarations, letters to landlords, and potential briefs for cases, and counseling tenants by phone about their rights.
This summer, I will be working as a law clerk for Institute for Governance & Sustainable Development, a DC-based NGO working to improve environment protection in the US and abroad. I will be assisting environment law attorneys by doing legal research on various environment topics, both in the US and abroad, and preparing briefs on those issues.
The Youth Defender Clinic (YDC) represents young people involved in the juvenile justice system in Alameda County. The mission of YDC is to stop the school-to-prison pipeline on an individual, institutional, and community level by addressing both the causes and consequences of court involvement. YDC does this by providing holistic defense representation, which includes representing young people in delinquency proceedings as well as in related civil proceedings that are deeply intertwined with the delinquency case, such as school expulsion, special education, housing, immigration, criminal record sealing and benefits proceedings. By connecting YDC clients with the multiple civil legal services already offered at EBCLC, YDC offers young people access to many services under one roof.
Carolina Garcia will be working in the East Bay Community Law Center’s HIV and Medical Legal Partnership Project this summer. As a summer intern, she will help provide a variety of legal services to low-income HIV-positive clients and to low income families referred to the Center by medical providers at Children’s Hospital Oakland.
I will be assisting clients through either the Clean Slate, Juvenile, or Civil Commitment departments of the office. I will work with attorneys in providing criminal defense-related services which may include helping to get records expunged, making sure the juveniles cases are up to date and that they are aware of the status of their cases, or assisting clients throughout the civil commitment process, depending on which branch I am assigned to work in.
Dolores Street Community Services provides pro bono legal defense for San Francisco residents facing imminent deportation from the United States. In 2011, the Deportation Defense program provided direct legal representation for more than 87 individuals in removal proceedings, including those apprehended during egregious immigration raids, or caught up by the notorious program known as “Secure Communities”. Many of the cases are highly complex, involve novel legal issues, and provide a vehicle to challenge unfair and unconstitutional practices committed by agents from Immigration & Customs Enforcement. I will be assisting the team of three attorneys in all matters.
Laura will be working in the representation of children and teens in dependency and delinquency proceedings.
This summer I’ll be a law clerk with the Orleans Public Defenders, which provides client-centered legal representation in Orleans parish’s criminal and juvenile justice systems. OPD represents 80% of people with legal cases in the parish. I’ll be assisting OPD attorneys in all aspects of criminal litigation including performing legal research, conducting factual investigation, drafting memoranda and motions, analyzing discovery materials, and preparing briefs.
I will be working at the Youth Law Center in San Francisco this summer. The Youth Law Center’s work focuses on working to protect children in the juvenile, welfare, and foster care systems. They use a variety of methods to make change – litigation, education, community efforts, and collaboration with other organizations – in order to target the rights of individual children involved in the various systems. The YLC is also working to bring about change by monitoring and acting on juvenile facility conditions and promoting sentencing alternatives in California and nationally. Summer interns work on legal research and writing projects and help with research and implementation of community outreach and advocacy through a variety of means.
Benjamin Sinoff will be working with the Los Angeles Office of the Public Defender. The Los Angeles Public Defender’s Office is largest provider of criminal defense to indigent clients in America. The Public Defender’s office makes certain that all of their client’s rights are preserved and that everyone charged with a crime is treated with respect and dignity. Here Ben will assist practicing public defenders in a variety of ways, primarily through legal research and writing.
PILCOP works to improve the well being of Philadelphia’s most vulnerable residents through high-impact legal strategies and direct services. As an intern, Laura will assist PILCOP attorneys working to end disability discrimination in employment and education.
The Contra Costa County Public Defender provides legal representation to indigent defendants in adult criminal cases charging felony or misdemeanor offenses, juvenile delinquency cases family law contempt matters, and Lanterman Petris Short (LPS) mental health commitment cases. The office also provides Clean Slate services to expunge criminal convictions and assistance with pardons for felony offenses.
Scott Wallace – Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Northern District of California
I will be spending my summer in San Francisco at the Office of the Federal Public Defender, which represents indigent clients charged with federal offenses in the Northern District of California. As a summer law clerk, I will conduct research and writing; assist in case investigation and trial preparation; and provide direct representation to clients with cases on the petty offense docket in federal court.
Summer of 2013
Benjamin Asch worked at Legal Aid of Marin, an organization that provides low-income, elderly, or otherwise underserved residents of Marin County, CA with foreclosure defense, employment discrimination claims, and consumer fraud complaints.
Cristina worked as an intern at Equal Justice Initiative, a nonprofit criminal defense and prisoner rights organization in Montgomery, Alabama. She worked on indigent defense and death penalty cases, as well as sentencing and prison reform throughout the country.
At Environmental Defense Center (EDC), I will be conducting legal research and possibly writing memoranda and other briefs to aid EDC staff with their program work. EDC is a nonprofit, public interest environmental law firm dedicated to protecting the central coast environment through education, advocacy and legal action. EDC also provides legal counsel to other nonprofit organizations.
Grant Huebner worked at the East Bay Community Law Center in the Health Practice. Through his work, he helped to address a spectrum of health related legal needs of low-income individuals and families through holistic legal services that target the underpinnings of poor health, poverty, and minimal access to health care. In particular, Grant chose EBCLC in order to work on the HIV/AIDS Law Project – in part to pay homage to his deceased uncle, a former Bay Area lawyer who died from AIDS.
I am proud to be working for the East Bay Community Law Center, where I will provide support for low-income individuals in the Bay Area. I am excited to be working with experienced attorneys, who give these individuals a voice in the justice system.
Judah Lakin will serve as a law clerk with the Bronx Defenders, a 501(c)(3) that provides public defense to indigent clients in the Bronx. The Bronx Defenders provide their clients with holistic defense, offering services that address all of the client’s needs in both civil and criminal matters as non-legal issues. In addition, the Bronx Defenders advocates for individualized and comprehensive alternatives to incarceration for their clients. As a law clerk, I will be assisting attorneys with their caseloads, hopefully with an emphasis on cases that involve both immigration and criminal matters.
Kara Alba worked at Centro Legal de la Raza in the Fruitvale District of Oakland. Kara worked in the Immigration Project and provided direct legal services to individuals seeking assistance with family-based immigration, permanent residency, citizenship and naturalization, asylum, deportation and removal defense, DACA, U-Visa, and Violence Against Women Act self petitions. Through this work, she was able to help clients access holistic immigration services on a long-term pathway to citizenship, and assist survivors of violence to obtain immigration relief.
I will be participating in the Clean Slate Practice Group. I will:provide direct legal services to help individuals clean up their criminal records and will participate in litigation against background check companies that have proyided the clients erroneous records. Through this work, the clients will be able to overcome barriers to employment, housing, education, and civic participation.
I will be working at the Legal Resources Centre, a human rights organization in South Africa that provides legal services for the vulnerable and marginalized, including the poor, homeless, and landless people and communities of South Africa who suffer discrimination by reason of race, class, gender, disability or by reason of social, economic, and historical circumstances. I will be based in the LRC’s Cape Town office, and will be working primarily on cases relating to the realization of LRC clients’ socio-economic rights.
This summer I will be working with the Health and Human Rights Division of Human Rights Watch. I will primarily be assisting with completing the research phase of a project documenting the human rights abuses which impede HIV prevention, treatment ,and care efforts for marginalized people in the United States and the Caribbean. Furthermore, I will be assist in the writing of a formal report regarding these findings. Additionally, I will be helping write advocacy pieces regarding various health and human rights issues including obstacles to care of abused and displaced women, torture, and ill-treatment in health care settings.
This summer I will be working for Bay Area Legal Aid in the Domestic Violence Prevention Unit in Oakland. I will be working with clients, drafting pleadings, attending court hearings, writing memos, etc. I will be working for 10 weeks this summer (40 hours/week) and will continue my work in a Field Placement Program in the fall for about 16 hours/week. The DV prevention unit aims to help low-income clients who have been victims of domestic violence and who need legal assistance.
This summer I will be interning at the Center for Biological Diversity. The Center is a non-profit environmental organization that uses science, law, and media to protect species at risk of extinction. I will be researching and writing about legal issues related to environmental protection.
This summer I look forward to building on my previous immigrant workers’ rights experiences by working for the Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center (LAS-ELC). The LAS-ELC is a non-profit organization dedicated to vindicating the rights of low-wage workers who are subjected to unlawful work-place violations. As a member of the National Origin, Immigration, and Language Rights Program my ten-week, full-time, summer clerkship will focus on representing immigrant workers who have suffered employment discrimination on the basis of their national origin, immigrant status, and or language skills. A large proportion of the clients that I will serve this summer will consist of low-income, low-wage, Latino immigrant workers. With the help Berkeley Law Foundation, I will be able to continue to pursue my passion of assisting and advocating for the needs of marginalized Latino immigrant communities and ensure that they have access to legal justice.
This summer I will be a clerk with the Louisiana Capital Assistance Center (LCAC) in New Orleans, Louisiana. The LCAC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit law office that provides legal representation to people facing the death penalty in Louisiana and other parts of the American South. The organization focuses on trial level representation of death-eligible defendants and on working with indigent defenders to improve quality and resources for poor people facing capital punishment. The LCAC focuses on client-centered representation, seeks to develop new and innovative advocacy strategies, and also pursues systematic litigation. The organization focuses on the following issues: increasing resources and support for capitally-sentenced inmates’ motions for new trial; the use of race in prosecutorial peremptory strikes of jurors; advocating for and protecting mentally ill capital defendants; potential violations of Atkins v. Virginia; and providing humanitarian support for capital defendants and their families.
This summer Luisa Tamez will be working with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF). MALDEF is the nation’s leading Latino civil rights organization. MALDEF currently focuses its impact litigation efforts in the areas of education, employment, immigrants’ rights, and political access. Luisa will be supporting these projects by providing litigation support to the regional counsel and staff attorneys,attending court hearings, and assessing legislation and public policy initiatives.
Mariel Bird worked with the Judges Chambers at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, where she assisted in the trial of individuals accused of crimes against humanity and violations of the laws or customs of war.
Meghan Harrington worked at the East Bay Community Law Center, the largest provider of free legal services in the East Bay. She worked the Health Practice providing legal services to low-income HIV positive clients and 4patients at the Oakland Children’s Hospital.
Neeta worked with the Urban Justice Center’s Community Development Project (CDP). CDP attorneys partner with community groups serving and organizing low-income tenants and workers in New York City to provide litigation support to their grassroots campaigns. Neeta feels lucky to have seen thoughtful community lawyering in action.
Rebecca worked during the summer of 2013 with Public Counsel, the nation’s largest pro bono law firm, in Los Angeles, CA. She assisted Public Counsel’s Immigrants’ Rights Project, which provides legal representation for individuals who qualify for forms of immigration relief including asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, U visa, and VAWA, provides services to clients in immigration detention, and advocates for more just and humane immigration policy at the local and national level.
I will be working at a trial-level capital defender office in Jackson, MS. My work will depend on the cases that the office has at the time. It is likely to consist of visiting clients in jail, doing mitigation research and interviews in clients’ former communities, and doing legal research and writing.
Supported by Therapeutics Research, Education, and AIDS Training in Asia (TREAT Asia), I will conduct exploratory assessments of the practice of forced abortions and sterilizations of HIV-positive women in Thailand. A 2004 study found that 55 percent of HIV-positive pregnant women were involuntarily sterilized within six weeks of delivery. Recent accounts from physicians confirm that the practice is still common. Throughout the entire summer, I will examine the current international and domestic legal frameworks protecting women’s reproductive health rights. Once in country, I will analyze the local political landscape, identifying platforms for the promotion of this human rights issue. After five months of field research over summer and fall, I will devise concrete, country-specific policy and advocacy recommendations. I hope to develop a framework, based on international and comparative law models, for how TREAT Asia and its allies might sustainably pursue policy intervention to stop the sexual coercion of HIV-positive women.
Summer of 2012
Katherine Adamides worked as a fellow for Accountability Counsel, a non-profit organization that supports communities harmed by corporate and development bank projects by assisting their citizen complaints to hold these entities accountable for human rights and environmental harm. Katie helped advocate for independent, fair, transparent, accessible and effective accountability mechanisms and creation of new complaint systems so that banks, corporations and institutions are held to the norms and standards to which they have agreed.
Kara Alba worked at the KIPP Foundation, a nonprofit that recruits, trains and supports outstanding leaders to open and sustain a national network of 109 free, locally-run college-preparatory charter schools in high-need communities serving more than 33,000 students in 21 states. Kara interned with the General Counsel and focused on nonprofit governance and incorporation, licensing, trademarks and nonprofit franchise, contracts and triage legal support for local boards and schools.
Rachel worked at the East Bay Community Law Center in the Neighborhood Justice Clinic pursuing work in consumer protection.
Anna Christensen served as an Ella Baker Intern with the Center for Constitutional Rights, working with some of CCR’s partner organizations in New Orleans. There, she contributed to litigation and advocacy on issues including racial and economic justice, the right to adequate housing, and other areas in which the rights of New Orleans’ communities are often implicated. She also worked closely with CCR’s New York headquarters, addressing issues which include international human rights and national security policies.
Sean Darling-Hammond was proud to have worked with Public Advocates, where he strove to protect the education rights of vulnerable families throughout California.
Rebekah worked at the Youth Law Center in San Francisco. She worked on issues of abuse in the child welfare and juvenile justice systems nationwide. She assisted in the development of best practices materials and in research for impact litigation to promote greater accountability within child welfare and juvenile justice institutions.
Lelia M. Gomez
Lelia Gomez worked at the Centro de los Derechos del Migrante in Mexico City. As a legal intern Lelia worked with a team of attorneys to represent migrant workers in Mexico-US labor violation cases. She also conducted know-your-rights labor workshops, as well as researched US guestworker policies.
Shana Heller worked at the East Bay Community Law Center, the largest provider of free legal services in the East Bay and a nationally-recognized poverty law clinic. Shana worked in the Clean Slate Practice group and provided direct legal services to help individuals clean up their criminal records. Through this work, she was able to help clients overcome barriers to employment, housing, education, and civic participation.
Saira Hussain worked as a law clerk at Disability Rights Advocates in Berkeley, helping to secure the civil rights of people with disabilities. She spent her summer advocating for the rights of disabled people through high-impact litigation in several areas of life, including access to technology, education, and employment.
Michelle Iorio served as a law clerk with the Bronx Defenders in their Criminal Defense Practice. The Bronx Defenders advocate for individualized and comprehensive alternatives to incarceration for their clients. The Bronx Defenders provide their clients with a holistic defense, offering services that address all of the client’s needs, not just their legal ones. As a law clerk, Michelle assisted two attorneys with their criminal defense caseload.
Cory spent the summer as a law clerk at the Southern Center for Human Rights in Atlanta. Her work there focused on defending people facing the death penalty and on litigation challenging prison and jail conditions and inadequate public defense in Georgia.
Rachel worked with AdvocAid, an organization in Freetown, Sierra Leone which provides legal representation and legal education to incarcerated women. She assisted AdvocAid’s lawyers in appellate advocacy for domestic violence survivors incarcerated for injuring or killing their abuser. She also trained AdvocAid’s paralegals on legal principles and human rights norms, including staff working in remote areas of the country. Rachel also assisted in establishing legal education programs for women in prisons to better learn their rights and assist them in successfully advocating for themselves.
Deep worked for the National Employment Law Project in Oakland. As a law clerk, she worked to reduce unfair employment barriers for workers with criminal records and help these workers preserve their employment opportunities.
Aliya Ali Khan
Aliya worked as a graduate student researcher at the Warren Institute of Race, Ethnicity and Diversity, a think tank that specializes in public policy and is affiliated with the law school. She was assigned to two criminal justice projects, one on the juvenile justice system and another on victim witness advocacy.
Michelle Kim worked as a law clerk at Communities For A Better Environment. During her time at CBE she worked to achieve environmental health and justice by building grassroots power in and with communities of color and working-class communities. She particularly spent time researching, and drafting legal memoranda on topics related to environmental justice as well as representing and advocating on behalf of CBE at local agency hearings and meetings.
Shevon Lewis worked with the Southern Center for Human Rights, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit law firm dedicated to protecting the civil and human rights of those in the criminal justice system in the South. Shevon assisted in providing legal representation to indigent defendants and death row inmates, documented human rights abuses in prisons, and advocated for criminal justice reform in Georgia and Alabama.
Peggy Li worked at The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area, which seeks to advance, protect and promote the rights of communities of color, immigrants and refugees, with a special focus on low income communities and the African American community. Peggy worked specifically on the racial justice docket and on education.
Maria Garrett de Lievano
Maria de Lievano worked as a law clerk in the family law division of Bay Area Legal Aid, Oakland. Her work focused on domestic violence and sexual assault, divorce, child custody disputes, spousal support and restraining orders. She also worked extensively on U-Visas.Her responsibilities consisted of a variety of legal research and writing, client care, and litigation assistance. Maria conducted client interviews and initial case assessments, obtained discovery and other evidence, prepared clients for trial, assisted her supervising attorney during trial, wrote briefs and other legal memoranda, drafted client declarations, and assisted self represented litigants as they prepared to take their case to trial.
Paul Meyer worked for CADHAC, a Monterrey, Mexico based NGO, documenting human rights abuses in the country’s drug war and advocating for judicial reforms.
Emily Puhl interned at Tenants Together, a statewide tenants’ rights organization based in San Francisco. She used her experience with Centro Legal de la Raza’s Tenants’ Rights Clinic to expand housing legal services to Spanish-speaking communities throughout the state. She also worked with attorneys to prepare for litigation about habitability issues in urban and rural communities. Finally, she assisted organizers and policy promoters with establishing local Just Cause ordinances in California. Emily worked with immigrant communities, low-income families, and communities of color in urban and rural areas of the state, primarily by providing legal advice and other legal support to renting families that called the organization’s foreclosure hotline for assistance with landlord foreclosures.
Rebecca Popuch worked this summer with Kids In Need of Defense-Los Angeles, serving a population of unaccompanied children who have removal (deportation) cases pending. Because immigration law is administrative, although the removal proceedings resemble criminal proceedings in a number of ways, there is no right to counsel for indigent defendants. Thus, children are expected to represent themselves in these proceedings—a task that is challenging even for an experienced attorney. The goal of Kids In Need of Defense is to screen children to find those who have a legal means of remaining in the U.S., and to represent or find pro bono counsel for as many of those children as possible. The majority of children for whom immigration remedies are available are those who have been the victims of family violence, as well as some who have been victims of violent crimes that took place in the U.S. or who fear persecution by their governments. With KIND-LA, Rebecca worked to screen children for relief and aid in their placement with a pro bono attorney to represent them in immigration.
Marissa Ram worked with the Brennan Center for Justice, a non-partisan public policy and law institute at New York University School of Law, that focuses on the fundamental issues of democracy and justice. The Brennan Center’s Liberty and National Security Program fights for the preservation of constitutional values in the post-9/11 world. Marissa assisted with impact litigation, public policy recommendations, and public advocacy in order to ensure that the commitment to national security comported with the rule of law and fundamental freedoms. Relevant issues included government transparency and accountability; domestic counterterrorism policies and their effects on privacy and First Amendment freedoms; detainee policy, including the detention, interrogation, and trial of terrorist suspects; and the need to safeguard the US system of checks and balances.
Habiba worked at Casa Cornelia Law Center with the Children’s Program. Casa Cornelia is committed to serving the indigent immigrant community in San Diego. Habiba provided legal aid for unaccompanied children apprehended by Border Patrol.
Ioana spent her summer working on a number of social justice projects with National Lawyers Guild attorneys in the Bay Area. She drafted briefs, conducted research, helped formulate creative legal strategies for cases dealing with gang injunctions in Oakland, discriminatory police tactics and intimidation, criminal charges and “stay away” orders against Occupy activists. She also helped run a community-based legal support network for activists. Most of her time she spent working on a joint effort with the Center for Constitutional Rights to pursue litigation against the California Department of Corrections based on cruel and unusual treatment of inmates in the Secure Housing Unit at Pelican Bay State Prison.
Eve worked as a Legal Intern at the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law, a non-partisan public policy and law institute that focuses on the fundamental issues of democracy and justice. Eve worked in the Brennan Center’s Democracy Program, which seeks to change the ways in which citizens participate in their government by fixing the systems that discourage voting, hinder competition, and promote the interests of the few over the rights of the many. Eve advanced the Center’s litigation efforts through legal research and policy analysis on issues related to voting rights and redistricting. Eve also engaged in media outreach, public education, and assisted with legislative advocacy regarding state laws infringing the right to vote. Eve enjoyed working with the Brennan Center which combines scholarship, legislative and legal advocacy, and communications to help win meaningful, measurable change in the public sector.
Micah West worked for The Bronx Defenders as an intern in the criminal defense practice. The Bronx Defenders provides holistic criminal defense to residents in the Bronx by addressing the causes and consequences of involvement in the criminal justice system.
Summer of 2011
Briana Abrams worked as a law clerk at Legal Advocates for Children and Youth, an office at the Law Foundation of Silicon Valley. Briana advocated for the rights of children in guardianship, dependency, and teen parenting proceedings. Briana drafted briefs to the court, researched novel legal issues, participated in court hearings, interviewed clients, made home visits, and collaborated with other individuals and offices working to help children in Silicon Valley.
At the Asian Pacific American Legal Center, Michelle Baik worked as the sole intern for the immigration unit. She did a variety of work that included both legal research and writing, as well as policy work. She wrote numerous letters of opposition or support for Federal and State programs and bills on behalf of APALC, did outreach to other organizations in California and nationwide to gain support for APALC’s work, worked on individual client’s cases by doing legal research and writing up memorandums to her supervising attorney, went to immigration clinics to help people fill out their naturalization forms, and in the last few weeks of her internship, she worked on a series of policy briefs on current issues in immigration, such as the DREAM Act.
Audrey Barron worked for Advocates for Children of New York. She spent her summer advocating for low-income children with disabilities in the New York City public school system. She helped several child clients win desperately needed services and proper school placements.
Colleen Bazdarich worked for the California Appellate Project, a non-profit established by the State Bar to assist counsel of indigent persons facing the death penalty. Working within CAP’s UCIP (Unrepresented Condemned Inmate Project) team, she collected records and researched the cases of two condemned inmates who have yet to receive Habeas counsel. Her assignment also included a number of visits to San Quentin Prison and the Central California Women’s Facility at Chowchilla to interview the clients.
Hilda Chan worked at the Supportive Parents Information Network (SPIN), an all-volunteer grassroots organization of very low-income families on public assistance. SPIN fights for pathways to self-sufficiency by combining direct legal services, policy advocacy, and organizing to bring community voices to the public dialogue. Hilda focused on cases in which domestic violence impeded families’ efforts to escape poverty.
Margaret Chen worked with the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project in New York. As a summer fellow, she worked on litigation challenging the detention and deportation of a Hispanic U.S. citizen with mental disabilities. She also analyzed potential Fourth Amendment violations in an immigration home raid.
Rachel DiNardo worked at the National Center for Youth Law.
Erin Everett served as a Legal Intern for the Housing Unit of Bay Area Legal Aid in Richmond, California. As a 2011 summer intern, she spent time researching and drafting legal memorandum on various housing law issues. In addition, she worked directly with clients to help fight unlawful evictions.
Michael Fairhurst was a legal intern at the ACLU of Northern California this summer, and wrote memos on subjects ranging from the Establishment Clause to the rights of immigrants in immigration court to California drug policy. In addition, he participated in a limited amount of individual complaint resolution and fact investigation.
Jolene Forman interned as a policy intern in the Police Practices group at the ACLU of Northern California. She advocated for counties across California to implement alternatives to incarceration in response to the prison overcrowding Supreme Court decision and state prisoner realignment legislation. She also conducted legal and policy research on front-end sentencing reform, drug policy, and pre-booking diversion programs.
As a Summer Law Clerk at DNA-People’s Legal Services, Inc., Jon Guss did client intakes, drafted complaints, motions, and briefs, and even represented clients when he was allowed to do so. DNA is the only organization providing free legal services to low-income clients on the Navajo Nation. DNA is dedicated to helping families break the cycle of poverty, preventing domestic abuse, protecting the rights of particularly vulnerable populations, and promoting tribal sovereignty.
Coreen Kopper worked as a law clerk at the Legal Aid Society – Employment Law Center in San Francisco helping low-wage workers with employment claims. She worked with the Community Legal Services program, representing workers in a wide variety of contexts, including at unemployment insurance hearings and at hearings before the Labor Commissioner.
Peggy Li worked at Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach, where she provided direct legal representation and culturally competent legal services to marginalized members of the San Francisco Bay Area community, specifically, the API community. She worked primarily in Elder Law, and Wills and Estates. She also worked in Trafficking Law and Immigration Law.
Christopher Lau interned at the Texas Defender Service (TDS). TDS works to improve the quality of representation afforded to those facing a death sentence and to expose and eradicate the systemic flaws plaguing the Texas death penalty. As an intern, he helped draft motions on intellectual disability, investigated ineffectiveness claims, and conducted mitigation interviews.
Molly Leiwant worked at the ACLU ReproductiveFreedom Project in New York. As a legalintern, she worked on impact litigation related to constitutional challenges tostate laws restricting reproductive rights. RFP’s work includes advocacy and legal challenges on issues of limits onabortion, shackling of pregnant women in prison, parental notification andconsent, and crisis pregnancy centers.
Shevon Lewis worked at Texas RioGrande Legal Aid- El Paso Office giving direct client services in the areas of housing, employment and labor, immigration, human trafficking, family, and property law. The most memorable event was when she successfully represented a client in an eviction hearing.
Anne Mooney worked last summer at Disability Rights Advocates, a nonprofit legal center dedicated to securing the civil rights of people with disabilities. Anne assisted attorneys in advocating for disability rights through high impact litigation.
Francis Nugent worked on class action impact litigation and policy research with the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, a nonprofit organization devoted to improving the lives of people with mental illnesses. He worked primarily on a class action suit brought against a school district for a failure to provide a free and appropriate education to students with emotional disturbances.
Casey Schutte interned at Legal Services for Children (LSC) in San Francisco, California. LSC provides free legal representation and social work services to children and youth in the Bay Area. As a legal intern, Casey worked on legal guardianship, immigration, and foster care cases.
As a law clerk at the Asian Law Caucus I counseled low-wage workers on a broad range of employment problems, including employment discrimination, harassment, retaliation, workplace safety, unemployment and wage and hour issues. I also represented individual workers though the administrative wage claim process before the California Labor Commissioner, wrote demand letters, negotiated settlements with employers, represented workers at unemployment benefit appeal hearings, and participated in community hearings and meetings.
Eve Weissman worked at the Berkeley Center for Health, Economic and Family Security (CHEFS) towards the development of a national policy proposal for Paid Family Leave Insurance. Similar to paid family leave programs in California and New Jersey, this federal program would provide partial wage replacement to individuals across the country who take time off from work to bond with a newborn or newly adopted child or to provide needed care to an ill family member. Eve interviewed policymakers and advocates in New Jersey, California, and Washington, DC and helped identify and address key issues in forthcoming legislation through legal research and policy analysis.
Summer of 2010
Ary Amerikaner worked on a brand new suit against the State of California for its failures to transform the inequitable, ineffective, and insufficient public education system – particularly its school financing scheme. She interviewed plaintiffs, drafted declarations, and helped with other education related policy advocacy.
Erin Armstrong worked with the SW Women’s Law Center (SWLC) in Albuquerque, New Mexico. As a summer fellow, Erin divided her time between research relating to reproductive health benefits under the state Medicaid program and the effects of federal health reform and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act on access to reproductive health care for women in New Mexico.
Jonathan Baum worked on impact litigation, advocacy, and public outreach to protect the constitutional rights of immigrants at the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project in San Francisco. He focused on cases ensuring judicial review of administrative decisions, challenging prolonged detention of immigrants during removal proceedings, and combating local enforcement of immigration laws.
As a legal intern at the Legal Aid Association of California (“LAAC”), Carmen Comsti advocated for legal services to the California legislature and courts, where she was building her legal research and advocacy skills when working on state legal service budgeting issues and amicus curiae briefs. LAAC was founded by California legal services programs as a statewide legal services organization to help programs collaborate on issues of mutual concern. LAAC provides training for legal services advocates for over 75 member organizations.
Michael Fairhurst was an Intern at the First Amendment Foundation in Tallahassee, Florida. The First Amendment Foundation seeks to protect and advance the public’s constitutional right to open government by providing education and training, legal aid and information services. As an aspiring constitutional lawyer, Michael benefited from the wide-ranging research and outreach opportunities his internship provided.
Jolene Forman was working at Drug Policy Alliance Network’s Office of Legal Affairs, located in Berkeley, CA. Her internship focused on legislative and initiative drafting at the state level on a range of drug policy reform issues; litigation and legal consulting to protect rights threatened by the drug war; and legal training at the local, state, national, and international levels.
Lily Harvey worked at Public Advocates. She conducted legal and policy research to assist in drafting federal legislation to address transportation equity. She developed materials to support legislative advocacy efforts and collaborated with researchers to strengthen the Surface Transportation Reauthorization Bill’s research and data collection provisions relating to Title VI and Environmental Justice. She also supported local efforts to organize transit riders in Oakland, CA.
Katie Henderson worked at the International Institute of the Bay Area. She worked on Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) visa and U-visa petitions, which permit undocumented victims of violent crimes and domestic violence to gain lawful status, employment authorization, and access to social services in the United States.
Rachel Johnson worked with Justice Now in order to end violence against women and stop their imprisonment. This is a reproductive justice organization. As a 2010 summer intern, Rachel worked with incarcerated women (mostly women of color) to mitigate their sentences, obtain access to healthcare, secure compassionate release, and defend their parental rights.
Coreen Kopper worked at the East Bay Community Law Center, the largest provider of legal services in the East Bay. She was excited to have the opportunity to intern in the housing unit, where she worked to provide direct legal services to tenants facing eviction and help to preserve housing subsidies for low income tenants at risk of losing their benefits.
Judith Le served as a Policy and Advocacy Intern for The Opportunity Agenda based in New York City. The Opportunity Agenda works to build public support and public policy for greater and more equal opportunity in the United States. As a 2010 summer intern, she assisted in drafting a policy brief on domestic human rights indicators and conducted research on labor and housing rights.
Erin Liotta was thrilled to spend her summer at the National Center for Youth Law, based in Oakland. NCYL is a national leader in the fight for justice for impoverished children and youth. At NCYL, Erin divided her time between research related to teen dating violence and litigation of a civil rights class action lawsuit filed on behalf of abused and neglected children in Las Vegas’s foster care system.
Tony LoPresti worked with the Center on Race, Poverty, and the Environment, a community-driven environmental justice organization that works in the Central Valley of California and throughout the country. He spent his time on clean air issues relating to mega-dairies, and working on several civil rights claims.
Jessica Mar worked as a legal intern with an international civil party lawyer with Access to Justice Asia to provide pro bono legal representation to ethnic minority civil parties before the ECCC, the hybrid UN/Cambodian Khmer Rouge Tribunal. Jessica worked directly with survivors of the genocide to support the prosecution of senior Khmer Rouge leaders for mass human rights violations.
Kei Nishimura was interning at the East Bay Children’s Law Office in Oakland/Hayward, CA. EBCLO is a nonprofit organization that provides free legal representation to children and youth who are the subject of abuse and neglect proceedings in Alameda County Juvenile Dependency Court. Kei was excited to spend the summer learning more about youth law and advocating on behalf of their many clients.
Julia Parish worked at the Employment Law Center – Legal Aid Society in San Francisco, representing low-wage workers in employment claims. She was part of the Gender Equity Group, working on cases ranging from pregnancy disability discrimination to gender identity harassment.
Gina Saeto interned at the Asian American Legal Defense Education Fund (AALDEF) in the Economic Justice Program Area. AALDEF is an Asian American civil rights organization that combines legal advocacy and community organizing to fight for the rights of low-income immigrants.
Rebecca Schonberg interned at the National Center for Law & Economic Justice (http://www.nclej.org) in New York City. Founded in 1965, NCLEJ uses a combination impact litigation, policy analysis, and advocacy to protect the civil rights of low-income individuals. In particular, NCLEJ fights to ensure that vital federal statutes like the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Food Stamp Act, and the Medicaid Act are fully and fairly enforced. This summer, Rebecca worked on court filings in benefits delay and deterrence cases, researched the due process rights of food stamp applicants, and conducted plaintiff outreach and local public benefits offices.
Karina Smith worked with low-income HIV positive clients and patients at the Oakland Children’s Hospital through her internship at the East Bay Community Law Center. She enjoyed helping clients straighten out their legal issues so that they could deal with their more important health issues.
Whitney Tipton spent this summer with the ACLU Capital Punishment Project in Durham, NC. The goal of the ACLU-CPP is abolition of capital punishment, which it pursues mainly via strategic individual representation at all procedural levels, including trial, direct appeal, and state post-conviction. Though the project is national, its clients are currently concentrated in the southern states, where there is the greatest need for assistance of qualified counsel.