Professional Experience

AIDSLaw of Louisiana, New Orleans, LA, January 2010—Present

Staff Attorney: Managing AIDSLaw’s disability discrimination practice; counseling up to 30 clients per week to meet legal needs arising out of HIV/AIDS status in three primary practice areas: Access to Health Care, Disability Discrimination, and Estate Planning; providing for community policy needs through research, advocacy and education; developing programs within a Human Rights framework and holistic law model in response to the changing HIV pandemic; serving as Editor-in-Chief of the Louisiana & HIV Human Rights Reporter.

The Pro Bono Project, New Orleans, LA, August 2007—January 2010

Outreach Attorney/Coordinator: Managed Elder Law and Homeless Programs by coordinating, staffing and supervising volunteer lawyers for legal clinics and through case management; supervised student volunteers in Gulf Coast recovery legal projects; developed and adapted programs to meet the changing legal needs of post-disaster Greater New Orleans.

Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Jefferson City, MO, January—May 2007

Environmental Law Intern: Answered legal queries from enforcement agents in the field and administrative staff through research of legal issues concerning the policy and enforcement of environmental regulations.

Student Hurricane Network, New Orleans, LA, Winter & Spring, 2006 & 2007

Katrina Legal Relief Worker: Counseled clients and briefed post-Katrina legal issues for the Advocacy Center of Louisiana, The Pro Bono Project, NAACP of New Orleans, and the Orleans Public Defender.

University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, September 2005— January 2007

Research Assistant: Conducted research for Philip J. Harter on the application of public participation in agency decisionmaking.


City of New Orleans Human Relations Commission, June 2013 – Present

Board Member: The New Orleans Human Relations Commission is a municipal agency which enforces the City’s Human Relations Rights laws. These laws are designed to eliminate and prevent discrimination in employment, in places of public accommodation, resort or amusement, in housing accommodations and in commercial space because of race, creed, national origin or ancestry, color, religion, gender or sex, sexual orientation, gender identification, marital status, age, physical condition or disability whenever such discrimination is prohibited by city law.

Louisiana AIDS Advocacy Network, August 2011—Present

Board Chair/Organization Co- Chair: Responding to state-level legislation that has a significant impact on the lives of people with HIV/AIDS through policy and advocacy efforts at the statewide level; guiding the state’s HIV community in advocating for Medicaid expansion; directing the development of the Louisiana HIV/AIDS Strategy for Advocacy; coordinating efforts to decriminalize HIV.

AIDS Gulf Coast Disaster Network, January 2011—April 2014

Attorney Advisor: Determining policy priorities through direct client and agency contact and coordinating with law student organizations and other non-profits in response to disasters throughout the Gulf Coast States of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Supervising the production of policy papers and brochures. Created and maintaining the website

 Unity of Greater New Orleans Advocacy Committee Chair, September 2008—January 2010

Discharge Planning: Explored and pursued enforcement mechanisms, collaborative policymaking, and nationwide best practices to fight against medical institutions discharging persons into homelessness.

Public Advocacy: Coordinated responses and input to policy and ordinance-making at the local governmental level on behalf of persons experiencing homelessness in Greater New Orleans.

Gulf Coast Consortium, August—November 2009

Gulf Coast Retreat Planning and Facilitation Team: Received training as a reflection and renewal retreat facilitator; co-planned and co-facilitated a retreat for Gulf Coast recovery Social Justice workers that focused on reflection, renewal, and coalition building across public interest sectors; funded by Foundation for the Mid-South, the American Red Cross, and sponsored by the Mississippi Center for Justice.

Katrina Recovery Group, May—August 2008

Democratic National Convention 2008 OxFam America Gulf Coast Recovery Team: Spoke to Caucuses, US Representatives, Delegates, policymakers and other advocates about the need for a Gulf Coast recovery surge as part of the One Nation, One Gulf, One Promise campaign. Messaging Committee: Participated in outlining the slogan, messaging and recovery platform of the Katrina Recovery Group and its One Nation, One Gulf, One Promise campaign. This campaign resulted in the Democratic National Committee’s adoption of our recovery platform.

National Day of Solidarity with the Gulf Coast, January 2006—August 2008

Committee Chair: Coordinated efforts to promote and support events at over 45 law schools across the country to raise awareness of recovery issues and recruit students to volunteer on the Gulf Coast during breaks.

Displaced Residents Task Force, January—May 2008

FEMA Response: Worked with other Gulf Coast advocates to coordinate and enact logistical, legal and public relations responses to FEMA decisions detrimental to displaced residents.


Professional and Academic Credentials

U.S. District Courts, Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of Louisiana

Admittance to the Bars, 2012–2014

National Institute of Trial Advocacy, New Orleans, Louisiana

Diploma in Trial Skills, January 2011

State of Louisiana, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Appointed Notary Public in and for the Parish of Orleans, January 2010

Supreme Court of the State of Louisiana, New Orleans, Louisiana

Admittance to the Bar, May 2009

University of Missouri School of Law, Columbia, Missouri

Juris Doctor and Certificate in Dispute Resolution, June 2007

China University of Politics and Law, Beijing, People’s Republic of China

Chinese Legal Studies, May—June 2005

Saint Louis University, St. Louis, Missouri

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, January 2001; Graduated Cum Laude

Majors in Marketing and International Studies; Minor in Philosophy

The Beijing Center for Chinese Studies, Beijing, People’s Republic of China

Chinese Studies, Emphasis in Business and Philosophy, August 1999—May 2000

Saint Louis University—Madrid Campus, Madrid, Spain

European Studies, Emphasis in Business, August 1998—December 1998

Presentations and Publications

Editor-in-Chief: Louisiana & HIV Human Rights Reporter No. 2 Vol. 2: Focus: HIV Discrimination and Human Rights Best Practices (Spring 2014).


Editor-in-Chief: Gulf Coast & HIV Human Rights Report: A Special Edition of the Louisiana & HIV Human Rights Reporter No. 2.Vol. 1 (Winter 2014).


Human rights and Health Care Exchanges: Affordable Care Act’s antidiscrimination provisions, HIV Clinician at 1-3 (Winter 2014).


Address to University of Missouri-Columbia Lambda Legal Chapter: AIDSLaw of Louisiana and the calling to public service (Columbia, MO—November 22, 2013).


Panelist at Louisiana State University: Non-Traditional Types of Public Interest Law, School of Law Public Interest Conference (Baton Rouge, LA—September 28, 2013).


Editor-in-Chief: Louisiana & HIV Human Rights Reporter No. 2 Vol. 1: Special Healthcare Edition (Spring 2013).


How will Medicaid expansion affect people with HIV?, with Mandisa Moore, HIV Clinician at 1, 4-5 (Winter 2013).


Editor-in-Chief: Louisiana HIV/AIDS Strategy for Advocacy: A Field Manual for Change (2013).


Presentation at Empowerment Conference for people living with HIV: HIV is not a Crime (New Orleans, LA—October 5, 2012).


Editor-in-Chief: Louisiana & HIV Human Rights Reporter No. 1 Vol. 1 (Fall 2012).


Policy and Power: Reflections on the 2012 International AIDS Conference, Louisiana & HIV Human Rights Reporter at 1 & 2 (Fall 2012).


Panelist at Latino Caribbean Diaspora Networking Zone: NO/AIDS Task Force, HIV and the Latino Community in the South: Focus on Louisiana, XIX International AIDS Conference (Washington D.C.—July 26, 2012).


Poster Exhibition: Building a Law School Law and Policy Support Network in Response to the AIDS Gulf Coast Disaster: A Novel Approach to Expanding Advocacy in the Aftermath of Catastrophes Affecting the Human Rights of PLHIV, XIX International AIDS Conference (Washington D.C.—July 25, 2012).


A human rights-based approach to HIV health care, HIV Clinician at 1 & 5-7 (Summer 2012).


Documenting mental health for disability claims, HIV Clinician at 1 & 5-7 (Winter 2012).


Panelist at Oxford House World Services Annual Convention: Accommodating HIV and Other Disabilities in Oxford House (Washington, D.C.—September 3, 2011).


Panelist at Harvard University Lambda Legal Conference: Age and HIV/AIDS Discrimination (Cambridge, MA—April 2, 2011).


Address to Boston University Public Interest Law Students: The AIDS Gulf Coast Disaster (Boston, MA–October 8, 2010).


Address to Harvard University Lambda Legal Chapter: The AIDS Gulf Coast Disaster (Cambridge, MA—October 6, 2010).


Panelist before Visiting Law Student Volunteers: Continuing Post-Katrina Challenges for Legal Service Providers (New Orleans, LA—March 14, 2010).


Panelist before the Society of American Law Teachers: Gulf Coast Needs and Creative Responses to Continuing Calls for Legal Assistance (New Orleans, LA—January 7, 2010).


Address to Visiting Law Students at Student Hurricane Network’s Volunteer Orientation: Disaster Law 101: Fighting the Affordable Housing Crisis at Ground Zero (New Orleans, LA—March 23, 2008).


Address to Visiting Law Students at Tulane University/SHN Volunteer Orientation: ABrave New South: Shared Dynamics of the US and Global South’s (New Orleans, LA—Feb. 20, 2008).


Address to Visiting Law Students at Tulane University/SHN Volunteer Orientation: Market Failure from the Mississippi Basin to Hurricane-Hit New Orleans (New Orleans, LA—Jan. 6, 2008).


Address to Visiting Law Students at Loyola University/SHN Volunteer Orientation: Legal Challenges for People Experiencing Poverty in post-Katrina New Orleans (New Orleans, LA—Jan. 1, 2008).


Review: State and Laid-Off Workers in Reform China: The silence and collective action of the retrenched, by Yongshun Cai, 13 China Review International 142 (Fall 2006).


Review: Engaging the Law in China: State, Society, & Possibilities for Justice, edited by Neil J. Diamanti, Stanley B. Lubman, and Kevin J. O’Brian, 13 China Review International 82 (Spring 2006).


Other Activities, Awards and Honors


  • Tennessee Williams Literary Festival/Saints & Sinners Literary Festival, New Orleans, LA

Site Manager, Springs of 2006—2013

  • Alexander D. Forger Award awarded to AIDSLaw of Louisiana by the American Bar

Association, 2012

  • Francis Perkins Public Service Award awarded to The Pro Bono Project by the American Bar

Association, 2008

  • Featured in the MU Law Alumni magazine article Extraordinary Leadership, 31 Transcript 13 (2007)

  • 2007 University of Missouri International Moot Court Team

Edited MU memorials for LACHS Space Moot, March 2007

                                Argued two rounds in JESSUP Regionals, Lexington, VA, February 2007

                                Competitive Placement, MU, October 2006

  • Rollins Honorary Graduate Society, University of Missouri, April 2006
  • Honorable Discharge, United States Army 2002
  • Army Achievement Medal, United States Army, 1999 & 1997
  • Army Reserve Achievement Medal, United States Army 1998