Over the past few years, we've expanded our programs, events, and activities. In fact, we've been expanding so much that we needed more staff to keep all of the trains running. So we're pleased to announce that Lydia C. Watts will be joining us as our Associate Director. A summa cum laude graduate of American University's Washington College of Law, Lydia has an impressive and diverse array of experience and a deep commitment to public interest law. She is Deputy Director of the DC Access to Justice Commission, which works to address barriers to the justice systems facing low- and moderate-income people in Washington, DC. Since September 2005, Lydia has also been a Principal of Greater Good Consulting, which specializes in nonprofit organizational development. Lydia was previously Executive Director and Co-Founder of Women Empowered Against Violence, Director of Quality and Program Enhancement of the National Legal Aid and Defender Association, Executive Director of the Victim Rights Law Center in Boston, and Executive Director of the Massachusetts Alliance on Teen Pregnancy. She is the founding board chair of the Network for Victim Recovery of DC, a holistic service provider for victims of crimes in Washington, DC. And she serves on the Board of Directors of Mentoring Today. As for her new position, Lydia is as excited as we are: "I am so honored to join the staff of the Washington Council of Lawyers. As a long-time public interest attorney in DC, I am very familiar with all of its amazing programs, events, and opportunities to keep our community informed and united. I am eager to be a part of expanding those offerings and getting to know our members even better." A warm welcome to Lydia, and we hope you all get to meet her soon!
Leandra Carrasco joined us in December as Administrative Director. We’re delighted that Leandra will be using her considerable skill and enthusiasm to support pro-bono and public-interest lawyers in their work. With a background in community outreach and development, Leandra has always wanted to use her law degree to promote social justice. She received an Advocate for Justice scholarship to attend the University of the District of Columbia’s David A. Clarke School of Law and graduated magna cum laude. For Leandra, law school had two highlights: The first was completing over 750 hours of pro bono legal work at the Community Development and HIV/AIDS Family Law clinics. The second was working for the school’s founder, Edgar Cahn, as a teaching assistant and service coordinator for the mandatory Law & Justice class—which requires all 1Ls to complete 40 hours of law-related community service. (More…)