By Natalie Disla
The Florida Bar Foundation will fund four Equal Justice Works Fellows from 2019 to 2021. Hosted by various Florida legal aid organizations, these Fellows’ two-year civil legal aid projects will provide impoverished groups with the representation and implementation needed to make progress in their communities.
“Their projects focus on underrepresented and underprivileged groups throughout Florida, who so desperately need greater access to civil legal aid,” said Juliette E. Lippman, president of The Florida Bar Foundation. “I’m eager to see the lasting impact these fellows will make in their communities.”
The new fellows will focus on advocacy for the disabled, homeless women and children, veterans and human trafficking victims. The four fellows are:
Viviana Bonilla Lopez, Disability Rights Florida
Lopez will protect and restore the civil rights of people with disabilities in Miami-Dade County by expanding supported decision making as an alternative to guardianship in the 11th Judicial Circuit. Lopez graduated from New York University of Law in 2017.
Jackie Ebert, Legal Services of Greater Miami
Ebert will provide legal training, technical assistance, and representation to chronically homeless women and children to remove legal barriers to housing stability, self-sufficiency and self-determination. Ebert graduated from Harvard Law School in 2018.
Jon Glover, Stetson College of Law Veterans Law Institute
Glover will create and manage a veterans outreach program in the Tampa Bay area to assist veterans and dependents with the process and requirements for removing barriers to benefits by providing pro bono legal aid services. Glover is expected to graduate from Stetson College of Law in May.
Victoria Sexton, Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida
In South Florida, which is considered a hot spot for human trafficking, Sexton will conduct a community needs assessment and advocate for trafficking survivors by providing holistic direct civil legal services. In May, Sexton is expected to graduate from Georgetown Law.
Greenburg Traurig, an international law firm, is jointly funding Jon Glover with The Florida Bar Foundation. The Foundation funds the three other fellows through its Bank of America grant program.
Equal Justice Works is a nonprofit organization that uses a network of lawyers, law students, legal service organizations and supporters to ensure public service and equal justice in America. Having invested more than $4 million in 80 Fellowships since 1999, The Florida Bar Foundation is one of the largest funders of the Equal Justice Works Fellowship program.
The Florida Bar Foundation accomplishes its mission by funding programs that expand and improve representation and advocacy on behalf of low-income persons in civil legal matters, improve the fair and effective administration of justice, and promote public service among lawyers.