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Past Scholarship Recipients

2016 Scholarship Recipients

Megan E. Helfend is entering her third year at Loyola Law School this fall.  Ms. Helfend has demonstrated a strong commitment to issues involving children.  Following her first year at Loyola, Ms. Helfend served as a summer intern at the Children’s Law Center of California (“CLC”), where she worked with foster children involved in abuse and neglect proceedings pending in dependency court.  Ms. Helfend found her experience at CLC and her interaction with very resilient young clients so fulfilling that she extended her internship into the fall of 2015. 

During her second year at Loyola, Ms. Helfend joined the school’s Center for Juvenile Law and Policy (“Center”), where she was a clinical student in the Youth Justice Education Clinic.  She will be continuing with the Center this coming school year, but will be working instead with issues concerning juvenile sentencing. 

Ms. Helfend was also recently accepted as a participant in the Civil Rights Litigation Practicum at Loyola where she will learn civil rights advocacy in the fall semester of 2016, and will be placed as an extern in the spring semester.  She plans to seek placement in an agency specializing in education issues, as she believes education should be a fundamental right afforded to all children.  Additionally, Ms. Helfend was appointed as a board member of the Children and Family Law Society at Loyola.  As a board member, Ms. Helfend organizes events to educate other law students about children’s rights under the law. 

Ms. Helfend is furthering her litigation skills by working with a civil rights defense firm in Pasadena this summer.  She plans to focus on indigent juvenile criminal defense after graduation from law school.

Ms. Helfend is passionate about helping youth and attended law school with that goal in mind; she is prepared for a low paying career as a children’s rights advocate and is already looking into loan forgiveness programs and grants in order to make her goal a reality.  


Cecilia C. Herrera is entering her third year at Loyola Law School this fall.  Ms. Herrera’s interest in issues affecting children developed early as a result of her own personal experience and upbringing.  Before starting law school, Ms. Herrera worked at two different courthouses where she provided assistance to underserved populations through family law self-help centers.  Such experience led Ms. Herrera to discover that many families have had a history of dependency cases.  Hence, during the first summer after her first year at Loyola, Ms. Herrera applied for and served as a law clerk at the Children’s Law Center in Monterey Park, California.

During her second year at Loyola, Ms. Herrera took the school’s Children and the Law course, where students are introduced to the child welfare system, the delinquency system, and the constitutional rights of children and parents.  The research paper that Ms. Herrera wrote for the class titled “Decriminalizing Victims of Commercial Sexual Exploitation” was highly regarded by her professor.   

This summer, Ms. Herrera is working as a certified law clerk at the San Diego County Public Defender’s Office, where she works on juvenile delinquency issues. 

In the fall semester of 2016, Ms. Herrera will be working at the Loyola Law School’s Youth Justice and Education Clinic, which focuses on getting youth the special education needs that their school has failed to provide.  She will also be the oncoming President of La Raza de Loyola and Chair of the newly created Stereotype Awareness Coalition (“Coalition”).  The Coalition works to raise awareness concerning biases and stereotypes related to gender, race, nationality, and religion.

Ms. Herrera hopes to work as a public defender in juvenile delinquency after graduation from law school.  

2015 Scholarship Recipients

Patrice Victoria Corpus is entering her third year at Loyola Law School this fall.  Ms. Corpus’ interest and involvement with organizations working with women and/or children have been longstanding.  Before and during college, she coached basketball and mentored at-risk youth at a park and recreation in the San Fernando Valley.  Also during college, she participated in a Teach in Prison program which helped inmates work towards their GED.  After graduation, Ms. Corpus practiced in the field of social work for three years.  During this time, she worked with AIDS Project Los Angeles, which provides services to a large population of homeless women who have substance abuse issues or have become in the sex-trade industry.  She also worked with the El Nido Family Centers as a case manager in their Adolescent Family Life Program.  Since entering law school, Ms. Corpus has continued her work with children by clerking for the Children’s Law Center of California.  During the 2014-2015 school year, she participated in the Juvenile Justice Clinic as a certified law student representing minors in delinquency proceedings.  Ms. Corpus will be working with the Juvenile Innocence and Fair Sentencing Clinic this upcoming school year, where she will deal with severe sentences and wrongful convictions of juveniles.  She plans to focus on indigent juvenile criminal defense after graduation from law school.

Jindan-Karena Kaur Mann is entering her third year at USC Law School this fall.  Ms. Mann’s developed her interest in international human rights law after she learned about the significant gender inequality that eventually resulted in the demise of certain of her female relatives.  Given her focus, Ms. Mann has traveled to many countries, and has worked with NGOs based in Switzerland, including YouthSection and Identity Through Initiative.  While in law school, Ms. Mann was one of 8 students chosen for the International Human Rights Clinic for the 2014-2015 year where she represented a female client who is a survivor of human trafficking and domestic violence, and also worked on two projects on issues concerning unaccompanied children fleeing from gang violence in Central America.  During the clinic, Ms. Mann also received training from the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking on representation of survivors of human trafficking.  She hopes to work for an international tribunal after law school to continue her human rights work and is also applying to work for a human rights organization here in Los Angeles.  

2014 Scholarship Recipients


Cortney Cortez is entering her third year at Loyola Law School this fall.  Ms. Cortez’ interest in immigration law started in high school, after she witnessed how ordinances passed by the City of Escondido had a direct adverse effect on undocumented immigrants.  Ms. Cortez’ focus on immigration issues paved the way for her ability to assist women in need.  Ms. Cortez began working for the Home Base Immigration Clinic (“Home Base”) this year where she has interacted with many young undocumented women who are victims of domestic abuse.  Specifically, Ms. Cortez worked with a 27 year old woman who endured over 10 years of domestic violence.  During the course of the representation, Ms. Cortez empowered her client to take pride in her self-worth while ensuring her immigration status did not remain in jeopardy.   Ms. Cortez will continue working for Home Base in the upcoming school year.  This summer, Ms. Cortez is working for the Immigration Court in Los Angeles.


Danielle Gersh is entering her third year at Loyola Law School this fall.  Ms. Gersh’s focus on advocacy for juveniles has been longstanding.  Prior to law school, Ms. Gersh was a volunteer for United In Harmony’s Camp Harmony, which provided positive outreach programs for children living in the inner city of Los Angeles.  Thereafter, Ms. Gersh taught U.S. history in South Central Los Angeles for two years to students with various personal struggles.  In law school, she began working for the Loyola Center for Juvenile Law and Policy (“Center”).  As a Certified Law Student at the Center, Ms. Gersh is able to be the voice for youth involved in the delinquency system.  Her experience thus far has confirmed her devotion towards juvenile justice.  This summer, Ms. Gersh is working for the Los Angeles County Defender’s Office where she hopes to build on the skills necessary to become a juvenile public defender.    



Jasmine Phillips is entering her third year at UCLA School of Law this fall where she is the Cultural Awareness Chair for the Black Law Students Association, Co-Chair of the Int’l Human Rights Law Association, the Advocacy Co-Chair Criminal Justice Society, and the Clinic Co-Chair Education Law and Policy Society.  She is also co-chair of the UCLAW Re-Entry Legal Clinic which partners with A New Way of Life, which is also involved with and provides housing and re-entry assistance to formerly incarcerated women. This summer she is studying abroad in South Africa and researching the correlation between race and female incarceration.  For the second half of the summer she will be interning for the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund which focuses on racial injustice.  She is currently applying for fellowships and hopes to work at Public Counsel, the Alliance for Children’s Rights, Human Rights Watch or a similar organization after graduation.  She wants to continue studying the impact of race on incarceration and recidivism. 


Nalleli Sandoval is entering her second year at Southwestern Law School this fall.  Even prior to law school, Ms. Sandoval has exhibited her passion for issues affecting women and children.  Following college, Ms. Sandoval became involved with the Americorps City Year Program, where she planned school-wide initiatives and designed lesson plans to promote literacy among the youth.  Thereafter, Ms. Sandoval participated in the Americorps Justicecorps Program, where she worked at a self-help center at the Los Angeles Superior Court and assisted self-represented litigants with divorces and paternities.  Most of her cases at the Justicecorps Program involved women going to trial against their husbands.  More recently, Ms. Sandoval participated in the Justicebus program, which gave her the opportunity to assist victims of domestic violence.  This summer, Ms. Sandoval will be externing in Buenos Aires, Argentina to further her interests in women issues.

Justine Schneeweis is entering her third year at Loyola Law School this fall.  Ms. Schneeweis has found the ability to effectively combine her well-established commitment to women and children rights and her growing dedication to the rights of immigrants.  During college, Ms. Schneeweis organized many campus and community events concerning a myriad of issues affecting women, i.e., sexual violence, reproductive rights, and LGBT rights.  In 2009 and 2011, she attended NGO delegations to Guatemala and Columbia to research femicide and human rights abuses.  After college, Ms. Schneeweis volunteered as a crisis intervention counselor-advocate at Peace Over Violence, where she staffed the LA Rape and Battery Hotline.  Ms. Schneeweis’ pre-law school volunteer efforts did not go unnoticed at Loyola Law School, which awarded her one of the highly competitive merit-based public interest scholarships upon entry.  During law school, Ms. Schneeweis has volunteered for the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project, where she handled a displaced Iraqi woman’s resettlement case, and also the Youth Program at Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project, where she helped provide legal services to detained immigrant children in removal proceedings.  More recently, Ms. Schneeweis began working for the Home Base Immigration Clinic where she is responsible for handling an asylum case for a young woman from Mexico and a U-Visa case for a domestic violence survivor.  This summer, Ms. Schneeweis will be working with the ACLU Immigrant Rights Project.  

2013 Scholarship Recipients


Jeanette Alvarez-Webster is a student of the University of West Los Angeles Law School.  Ms. Alvarez-Webster works for BASTA, Inc. full-time during the day and attends law school at night.  Ms. Alvarez-Webster was drawn to BASTA because of her own family’s experiences.  BASTA, Inc. is a non-profit organization that helps tenants facing eviction and those living in substandard conditions in Los Angeles.  BASTA is one of only a few organizations that offer legal services to tenants at low cost.  Moreover, BASTA is unique in that it does not receive government funds—hence, BASTA is able to help clients without restrictions.  Many of BASTA’s clients are single mothers living with their children.  Being able to fight her clients’ evictions as well as compel landlords to repair unbearable living conditions has been rewarding for Ms. Alvarez- Webster and has solidified her goal to obtain a law degree.  



Ms. Gutierrez will be entering her third year at Loyola Law School this fall.  Ms. Gutierrez has had a long-standing commitment to women and children issues.  While pursuing her undergraduate degree at USC, Ms. Gutierrez tutored elementary school children through the USC Joint Educational Project.  She also participated in beautification projects and weekend support groups for battered women at the Casa de Rosas Sunshine Mission for Women in Los Angeles.  She was also involved with the Women and Youth Supporting Each Other chapter at USC, where she devised and delivered lesson plans to empower middle school girls to make good choices for themselves.   After graduating from USC, Ms. Gutierrez served as the Program and Operations Associate at Kids in Need of Defense (KIND), where she helped set up the organization’s headquarters office and manage its nationwide field offices.  While at KIND, she also assisted immigrant and indigent children in immigration removal proceedings.  During law school, Ms. Gutierrez has worked for the Compton Superior Court Self-Help Center, where she assisted in the domestic violence clinic and at the Casa Cornelia Law Center, where she assisted in status applications for minors.  This summer Ms. Gutierrez will be a judicial extern for the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. 


Alana Martinez recently completed her first year at Loyola Law School.  Before law school, Ms. Martinez has exemplified her commitment to issues affecting women and children by working for the Foundation for Women, a microfinance nonprofit organization designed to further the goals of female business-owners.  Ms. Martinez also worked for the San Diego County Childhood Obesity Initiative, a nonprofit organization which aims to reduce childhood obesity in San Diego, and in that organization, she helped determine how to make produce more accessible to women and children living in areas where there is limited access to large grocery stores.  Ms. Martinez also worked for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), a government program that provides low-income women and their children with nutrition information and food vouchers.  While at WIC, Ms. Martinez assisted in providing information on available resources to nearly a hundred women on a daily basis.  This summer, Ms. Martinez will be working for the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles’ domestic violence clinic at the Santa Monica Courthouse.



Ms. Mitchell recently completed her first year at Loyola Law School’s evening program.  Upon completing her undergraduate studies in 2005, Ms. Mitchell joined the Jesuit Voluteer Corps and committed to a year of simple living, social justice, and volunteer service in a community with limited resources.  As part of the program, Ms. Mitchell started volunteering as a paralegal at the Central American Resource Center (CARECEN), where she now works full-time during the day as an accredited representative, and attends law school at night.  At CARECEN, Ms. Mitchell has worked with immigrant survivors of domestic violence, human trafficking, asylum seekers, and families seeking reunification through family-based immigration.  One of the highlights of Ms. Mitchell’s public interest work was the creation of a Citizenship Resource Center for naturalization applicants.  In 2009, Ms. Mitchell co-authored a grant for $100,000 to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to expand citizenship services.  This grant became the "seed money” to create a comprehensive naturalization program that includes legal services, a resource lab, and five citizenship classes.  Since opening in late 2009, the center has grown to serve over 300 individuals annually.  Currently, Ms. Mitchell is in El Salvador to further her research on the social ramifications of immigration laws among the Central American communities in Los Angeles.   Specifically, she is determining the impact of family separation created by Temporary Protected Status (TPS), a provisional immigration status granted to certain Central Americans in the United States.  While it provides some immigration relief, TPS does not contain a path to permanent legal status and many applicants end up separated from family members (i.e. children) abroad for many years


 2012 Scholarship Recipients

Megan Callaway has completed her first year at Pepperdine University School of Law where she currently has a 3.2 GPA. She decided to go to Pepperdine because of its Global Justice Program. This summer, she worked as a judicial extern for the Ugandan Judiciary, Family Division in order to learn about the treatment of women and the displacement of children under Ugandan Law. During her externship, she wrote a report on foreign adoption in Uganda and the court’s rule in the process, which included a comparison with the adoption process in the United States. Ms. Callaway will be participating in the Asylum Clinic at Pepperdine this fall. Ms. Callaway plans to pursue public interest work after graduation.

Vanessa Manzi has completed her second year at Southwestern Law School where she currently has a 3.2 GPA. She is the incoming president of the Latino Law Student Association and the Immigration Law Student Association. Having immigrated to the United States as a teenager, Ms. Manzi is very passionate about supporting and helping other young Latinas with their struggles and immigration issues. Among other activities, she founded a community service group named Teen Korner in March 2009, which continues to mentor teens who may be at risk for gang involvement, and helps them pursue a college education. Her ultimate goal is to become an immigration attorney and continue helping the immigrant community here in Los Angeles.

Jeffrey Salvesen has completed his first year at Pepperdine University School of Law where he maintains a 3.1 GPA. Mr. Salvesen has worked as an extern for the Honorable Sandra L. Klein, United States Bankruptcy Judge, a board member at WLALA. Prior to law school, Mr. Salvesen organized over five thousand volunteer hours to assist elementary students after school in five different Waltham, Mas­sachusettsschools, and organized holiday events for several hundred young children at the YMCA. After law school, Mr. Salvesen intends on pursuing a position involving education law, i.e., improving laws and regulations relating to racial and sexual discrimination, disability, and curriculum. He is also interested in helping make post-secondary schools more affordable to students generally.


 Elicia Stoller has completed her first year at Pepperdine University School of Law where she maintains a 3.6 GPA, and is in the top 11% of her class. Since May 2008, she has been working at the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office, Witness Coordination Unit, where she is now a supervisor. Last summer, Ms. Stoller worked for the District Attorney’s Office, specifically the Victim Impact Program, which handles matters relating to elder and child abuse, domestic violence, sexual abuse, hate crimes, and stalking. Ms. Stoller is strongly committed to effecting change by working for the District At­torney’s Office. She had the misfortune of seeing an immediate family member’s experience on the other side of the law and had to endure the struggles that resulted therefrom since she was a child. She believes that her legal education will enable her to secure justice for victims and help prevent the recidivism that plagued her family member.





2011 Scholarship Recipients

Elisa Hermann is currently a student at Loyola Law School.  Ms. Hermann began her commitment to women’s and children’s issues during high school.  At sixteen years of age, she enrolled in a 40-hour domestic violence course to be able to volunteer at a local battered women’s shelter.  She thereafter volunteered for six years with Sojourn Services for Battered Women and Their Children.  After graduating from UCLA in 2008, she participated in a fellowship in Israel.  Among the organizations she worked for during her fellowship were Itach-Maaki, Women Lawyers for Social Justice, which allowed her to help improve the treatment of minority women under Israeli law, and Advancement of Education Institute, for which she wrote grants for low-income children to enable them to receive educational and professional enrichment programs.  During the summer of 2010, Ms. Hermann was an intern at the Community Legal Services, where she helped prepare restraining orders at the Domestic Violence Clinic at the Compton and Norwalk Courthouses.  During the summer of 2011, Ms. Hermann will be working for Los Angeles Dependency Lawyers, where she will be assisting parents and guardians with representation in dependency hearings.  In addition to her legal experience, she is active in the Women’s Law Association at Loyola Law School.  She was this year’s co-community service chair.  As co-chair, she implemented a volunteer hotline with the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles for students at Loyola to help victims of domestic violence that are struggling with family law issues.  She also planned an event in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month by having various attorneys discuss the challenges of working with sexual assault survivors.  In the upcoming school year, Ms. Hermann will be President of the Women’s Law Association.  Post-law school, Ms. Hermann intends to create a post-graduate public interest fellowship that focuses on legal issues affecting sexual assault survivors.

Jean Domanski is currently a student at the Glendale University College of Law.  Being an attorney will be Ms. Domanski’s second career, having been a grade school teacher since 1997.  She is an evening student, trying to balance not only work and school, but also raising her own children.  While one would think a teacher would be naturally concerned about children’s issues, Ms. Domanski has a genuine and demonstrated passion for improving the lives of children, whether as a teacher in the classroom, her position as English Language Development Specialist, at which she is responsible for ensuring compliance with the Education Code and communicating with parents of English learners about their child’s progress, or her volunteer positions, including the Free Arts Courthouse Program at the Edelman Children’s Court.  She has also volunteered for the Sojourn Services for Battered Women and Their Children and the Neighborhood Legal Services in Pacoima.  Ms. Domanski plans to focus her legal career on issues surrounding children’s rights.  



Linda Igarashi is currently a student at the University of California, Los Angeles Law School.  Ms. Igarashi is the daughter of immigrant parents, and was the first in her family to enroll in a university.  Based on her knowledge of the difficulties of the lives of immigrants, Ms. Igarashi has focused on studying economic development and public policy.  After graduating from the University of California, Berkeley with a B.A. in Economics and B.S. in Business Administration, Ms. Igarashi became a Fulbright scholar and spent a year in Chile which she spent researching the economic impact of newly privatized pension systems on women.  Ms. Igarashi proceeded to obtain a Master of Public Administration in International Development from Harvard University, where she focused on issues facing developing countries, in particular those affecting women.  She intends to use her experience as a financial analyst and risk management consultant plus her legal education to help women in emerging economies to gain full economic participation by promoting how women-owned businesses can reduce their exposure to legal and financial risks.  In addition to her professional experience, Ms. Igarashi has volunteered at the Big Brother Big Sisters program and as a court-appointed special advocate for neglected girls in foster care.  She plans to continue to mentor disadvantaged girls in the Los Angeles area post-law school.



2010 Scholarship Recipients

Camille Rustia will graduate from Loyola Law School where she is president of the Women’s Law Association.  Prior to attending law school, Ms. Rustia was a journalist at CNN where she was part of the Peabody award-winning team for coverage of Hurricane Katrina. Since entering law school, Ms. Rustia interned in the legal department at Fox, Reveille, and the Intellectual Property firm, Doniger Burroughs.  As President of the WLA, Ms. Rustia worked toward her goal of facilitating mentorship among women in the legal profession by instituting a mentorship program for first-year students.  Ms. Rustia also organized a mock interview program for inner-city middle school students to prepare them for scholarship interviews at exclusive college-preparatory high schools in Los Angeles.  Each student successfully obtained full or partial scholarship toward a better high school education.  Additionally, Ms. Rustia spearheaded a 36 member, Race for the Cure team, raising over $3,500 for mammograms for underprivileged women.  A firm believer in the mantra that celebrating the success of one woman inspires many, Ms. Rustia organized a Minority Women in the Law Panel.  For her passion and commitment to mentorship among women in education and the legal profession, WLALA is honored to name Ms. Rustia as a 2010 Scholarship recipient.


Georgina Wakefield will graduate from UCLA Law in the Spring of 2011 where she is a member of the Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy and the Critical Race Studies specialization. Georgina is committed to a public interest legal career and has tailored her law school experience to achieve this goal. This past summer Georgina was a summer associate at Hadsell Stormer Keeny Richardson & Renick LLP, the premier civil rights and employment law firm, where she worked on a range of important civil rights cases. During the school year, Georgina served as the Co-Chair for OUTlaw, supporting and institutionalizing innovative programs for the LGBT community. Additionally, Georgina volunteers with Public Counsel's Community Development Program and with the LGL Transgender Legal Clinic. Along with her busy work and volunteer schedule, Georgina maintains a 3.54 GPA and was selected as Articles Editor of the UCLA Law Review. As an attorney, Georgina hopes to find solutions to the failures of the law to produce meaningful change and provide justice for women, LGBT communities, and communities of color.



2009 Scholarship Recipients

Catalina Rodas will graduate from Southwestern School of Law, where she currently has a 3.5 GPA and is ranked in the top 20% of her class, in the Spring of 2011.  After graduating from the University of Florida, Ms. Rodas began working at Peaceful Paths, a shelter for victims of domestic violence, where she actively worked to change domestic violence laws in Florida.  In an effort to learn from other state’s laws she moved to California to work at Sojourn, a domestic violence shelter in Santa Monica.  Ms. Rodas planned to stay for one year but her passion for helping others kept her at Sojourn for four years.  Along with her many duties she was also the coordinator for WLALA’s weekly legal clinic at Sojourn.  Ms. Rodas still works two nights per week at Sojourn and along with pursuing a career helping victims of domestic violence through direct services and improved legislation, she also plans to continue working or at least volunteering at Sojourn forever.   For her passion and commitment to ending violence against women, WLALA is honored to name Ms. Rodas a 2009 Scholarship recipient.


Julia Vasquez will graduate from the University of California Los Angeles School of Law in the Spring of 2010.   Prior to attending  law school Ms. Vasquez served the South Central Los Angeles community as a kindergarten teacher.  Her personal experiences and those of her students propelled her to a career in law so that she could be an advocate for underrepresented communities.   Ms. Vasquez is active at her school and sits as Co-Chair of the La Raza Law Students Association, as Articles Editor of the Chicana/o Latina/o Law Review, Board Member of the Immigration Law Society and as a Writing Advisor for the First-Year Lawyering Skills Course.  In addition, Ms. Vasquez will serve this next year as chair of the El Centro Legal Clinic, which provides free immigration advice to detainees.  Along with her numerous activities Ms. Vasquez has been able to maintain a 3.1 GPA.  Ms. Vasquez spent this  past Summer working as a law clerk for MALDEF.  Ms. Vasquez is dedicated to challenging the mistrust of the legal system which is pervasive in underrepresented communities and plans to serve as an advocate for the rights of immigrants and other underrepresented persons.  In recognition of her dedication to helping immigrants and the underprivileged, WLALA is honored to name Ms. Vasquez as a 2009 Scholarship recipient.


Alicia Virani will graduate from the  joint J.D. and Masters in urban Planning program at University of California Los Angeles School of Law in the Spring of 2011.  Ms. Virani occupies her free time as the Education Co-Chair for OUTlaw, the Co-chair for SHAREJD, and Co-Chair of the Teen Court Clinic at UCLA.  In addition, Ms. Virani co-founded the Los Angeles chapter of INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence and initiated a youth anti-violence summer program that began this past Summer.  Ms. Virani spent this Summer working at the Alliance for Children’s rights as an advocate for foster care youth.  Along with her busy work and volunteer schedule Ms. Virani found time this last year to aggressively pursue her studies and obtain a 3.2 GPA. Last year Ms. Virani worked at the National Center for Lesbian Rights where she assisted in preparing an educational manual on LGBT youth in juvenile detention.   Ms. Virani is passionate about providing alternative sentencing to LGBT juvenile offenders and upon graduation plans to start her own non-profit to provide a model alternative sentencing program here in Los Angeles.  In light of her dedication to improving the lives of the youth through public service, WLALA is honored to name Ms. Virani as a 2009 Scholarship recipient.


2008 Scholarship Recipients

Jessica Langley will graduate in the Spring of 2009 from the Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy at the UCLA School of Law.  Before attending law school Ms. Langley worked as a paralegal for the ACLU and volunteered as a Judge at the Youth Court in Washginton, D.C.  Ms. Langley currently volunteers at the El Centro Juvenile Detention Advocacy Clinic where she serves as chair of the program.  Ms. Langley serves as the Board Secretary for the UCLA Law Society for Children’s Rights, as the Summer  Pledge Drive Chair for the UCLA Public Interest Law Fund Board and as a volunteer with the ACLU of N. California Data Collection Project.  Ms. Langley also serves as Symposium Editor for the Journal for International Law and Foreign Affairs.  This past summer Ms. Langley worked for the LA County Public Defender’s Office.  This year Ms. Langeley will intern with the Habeaus Unit of the Federal Public Defender’s Office.   Ms. Langley is dedicated to helping children through reform in the juvenile prison system and plans to pursue a career here in Los Angeles representing indigent juveniles.  Due to her enthusiasm for helping children, WLALA is pleased to name Ms. Langley a 2008 Scholarship recipient. 

Rebecca Raizman will graduate from the University of Southern California Law School in the Spring of 2010.  During her first year Ms. Raizman found time to volunteer extensively with the LA County Bar Association Barristers Domestic Violence project and at the First AME Church Legal Clinic.  Ms. Raizman is a member of  UCLA’s Public Interest Law Foundation,  the Law Students for Reproductive Justice, the Jewish Law Students Association and the Women’s Law Assocation.  This past summer Ms. Raizman provided volunteer legal services with Bet Tzedek’s SOVA Reource Center Project and their Senior Legal Services Project.  Prior to attending law school Ms. Raizman worked as a  paralegal in the office of the general counsel for the FTC and volunteered with the Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless.  Upon graduation Ms. Raizman plans to continue providing legal services to low-income clients through employment with a public interest firm.  In light of her dedication to improving the lives of underprivileged women and children through public service, WLALA is honored to name Ms. Raizman as a 2008 Scholarship recipient.

Katherine Stewart will graduate from University of California Los Angeles School of Law in the Spring of 2010.  Ms. Stewart is the Associate Editor of the UCLA Chicano/a-Latino/ a Law Review and Assistant Editor of Critical Race Studies Online.  Ms. Stewart gives back to the community by volunteering with the Prisoner Re-Entry Clinic, through being the Co-Chair of SHARE JD and by co-founding an LA Chapter of INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence.  Ms. Stewart is dedicated to ending violence against women through legal and community action.   Prior to attending law school Ms. Stewart received a Master’s in Ethnic Studies from San Francisco State University.  Ms. Stewart currently is enrolled in the Critical Race Studies Specialization at UCLA School of Law.  After graduation Ms. Stewart plans to work with victims of domestic violence at a public interest firm.  To further this goal Ms. Stewart worked in a volunteer position this past summer with the Harriet Buhai Center.   For her passion and commitment to ending violence against women, WLALA is proud to name Ms. Stewart a 2008 Scholarship recipient. 

Tiffany Woo is enrolled in the two-year accelerated program at Southwestern University School of Law and will graduate in the Spring of 2009.   Ms. Woo demonstrates an amazing committement to her studies in that she maintains a 4.0 GPA while still finding time to volunteer with the Alliance for Children’s Rights, Special Education Project.  Prior to attending law school Ms. Woo received a Master’s in Social Work from UC Berkeley and worked for the next three years providing therapy to foster children. During this time Ms. Woo experienced firsthand the hardships these children face and saw the positive impact that a good dependency court attorney could have on these children’s lives.  Ms. Woo is dedicated to working with foster children and their familes upon graduation and hopes to secure a position at the Children’s Law Center as a dependency court attorney.   Due to her devotion to improving the lives of foster children and the manner in which she strives to reach her goals, WLALA is honored to name Ms. Woo as the 2008 Judge Chirlin Scholarship recipient.


2007 Scholarship Recipients

Ms. Rath will graduate from the University of West Los Angeles School of Law in 2008.  She participates in her school’s weekly legal aid clinic and also contributes to the student body by compiling an annual list of scholarship opportunities for students.  Ms. Rath currently works as a freelance writer to support herself and her two children while she attends law school.  She is dedicated to the needs of women and children and plans to pursue a career in the challenging new field of Family Formation law, which deals with assisted reproduction technologies, the use of DNA from unrelated parties and surrogacy agreements.  Ms. Rath’s commitment to helping others, her excellent academic record and her drive to succeed are just a few of the reasons that WLALA is proud to name her as a 2007 WLALA Scholarship Recipient and to award the NAWJ  Equal Access to Justice Scholarship to Ms. Rath.



Dina Yadegarian will graduate from Pepperdine University School of Law in 2008.  She is currently a writer for the Pepperdine Law Review, the Treasurer of the Armenian Law Students’ Association, and a member of the International Law Society, the Legal Waves, and the Pepperdine Women’s Legal Association.  Ms. Yadegarian also serves as a student mentor.  Ms. Yadegarian currently works as a summer associate for Demler Armstrong & Rowland, LLP in Long Beach, California, and as a teller for Bank of America.  Previously, Ms. Yadegarian interned for the Honorable Kathleen Thompson of the Untied States Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California, and for the Honorable Alice Altoon and the Honorable David Wesley of the Los Angeles County Superior Court.  Ms. Yadegarian’s goal is eventually to open her own firm that will focus on serving the family law needs of women and children.  In light of Ms. Yadegarian’s current achievements and her promising future, WLALA is proud to name her as a 2007 WLALA Scholarship Recipient and to award the NAWJ  Equal Access to Justice Scholarship to Ms. Yagderian.

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