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JUNE 2017 - Public Interest Grant
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WLALA Awards Two Kandel Summer Grants to WLALA Kandel Fellows Monica Ramsy and Morgan Thompson

The WLALA Foundation of the Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles (“WLALA”) is pleased to announce the award of two Fran Kandel Public Interest Grant Fellowships.  This year’s awards are the largest grants since the inception of the WLALA grant program in 1985.  The WLALA Kandel Fellows will develop and implement original projects in the field of public interest law to benefit people in the greater Los Angeles area, in the spirit of Fran Kandel.  

The namesake of the grant, Fran Kandel, served as an attorney for the California Court of Appeals and the California Appellate Project.  Fran was WLALA's President (1989-1990), a Pro Bono Service Awardee in 1993 and 1994 for work with Salvadoran refugees at El Rescate, the 1999 WLALA Distinguished Service Award recipient, and a founder of the WLALA public interest grant program in 1985, among a myriad of other accolades.  Fran is remembered as animated, generous, honest, and indomitable, and for her belief, which she proved, that one person's life can make the world better.  WLALA believes the 2017 WLALA Kandel Fellows embody the spirit of Fran Kandel.

WLALA Kandel Fellow Monica Ramsy will be creating a Know-Your-Rights brochure regarding religious refusals of reproductive healthcare services.  Working with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Southern California’s LGBTQ, Gender and Reproductive Justice Project, Ms. Ramsy’s project will include a multifaceted public education campaign, in-depth intake interviews with patients and healthcare providers, and materials synthesizing the narratives in light of relevant law.  Ms. Ramsy is completing her first year at Boalt Law School in the University of California, Berkeley.  Ms. Ramsy begins this project with a wealth of experience and knowledge from her previous roles as a campus organizer for the Feminist Majority Foundation, a high school sexual education instructor for Planned Parenthood, and research assistant to Professor Michele Goodwin, from UCI School of Law, a health justice legal expert. 

WLALA Kandel Fellow Morgan Thompson will be creating a brochure to warn female inmates at the Lynwood Jail about the signs of trafficking and to provide resources for victims of trafficking.  Working with the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST), Ms. Thompson will implement an education campaign for female inmates at the Lynwood Jail and create a brochure with supporting information.  Ms. Thompson graduated from Oregon State University with a double major in Psychology and Sociology, and she recently completed her first year at UCLA School of Law.  She has an impressive history of advocating for human rights, including as a paralegal intern in Cape Town, South Africa where she assisted with the legal defense of refugees and asylum seekers and researched sexual assault refugee policies.

Both WLALA Kandel Fellows will receive the maximum amount of the Kandel Grant, $5,000.  WLALA thanks ACLU and CAST for hosting the WLALA Kandel Fellows as they embark upon their grant projects. 

Congratulations to Monica Ramsy and Morgan Thompson!

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