Justice First, LLP

Internship program

Fellowship program


The Fellowship Program with Justice First

Every year, many dedicated and well-qualified law graduates are faced with limited opportunities for full-time employment as a public interest lawyer. The Fellowship Program at Justice First, LLP is a 12-week program designed to encourage recent law graduates to pursue a career in public interest law. We provide these graduates with meaningful legal experience, quality mentoring that values your professional growth, and career guidance intended to help you secure full-time employment in the field of public interest law.

Justice First, LLP is a public interest law firm that was founded in 2004. Our areas of focus include employment discrimination, criminal appeals for poor people, police misconduct, and hate crimes. Our firm advocates for those who have traditionally lacked power in our legal system. We restore dignity and remedy injustices by employing a variety of strategies including advocacy, litigation, public and media awareness, and coalition building.

Our firm was founded by Jenny Huang and Sarita Ordóñez, two close friends who graduated together from New York University School of Law in 1996. We have both dedicated our entire careers to public interest law and our work reflects a deep commitment to progressive lawyering. Through our fellowship program, we are dedicated to mentoring future generations of public interest lawyers.

We are seeking 1-2 law graduates to work in our Bay Area office for approximately 30 hours per week, for a minimum of twelve weeks. More important than the law school you attended or your grades, we seek a law graduate who has demonstrated a commitment to public interest law and who intends to practice in this field on a long-term basis. Prior experience working on behalf of underprivileged communities is preferred. We seek someone who takes their work seriously, yet knows how to have fun, is eager to learn, and values constructive feedback. Bar membership, or pending admission, is preferred but not required.

Our Fellows are exposed to a variety of substantive areas in both criminal and civil rights law. Our work consists of cases at various stages of litigation, including appeals. Work assignments for our Fellows are based not only on the needs of our firm, but also on the interests and needs of our graduates. We assure that all Fellows receive assignments that reflective a variety of legal skills, which may include interviewing clients and witnesses, factual investigation, legal research and writing, drafting pleadings, discovery requests, and briefs, second-seating depositions and oral arguments, and coalition building. For our Fellows who are admitted to practice law, we will give you opportunities to practice that will make you excited to be a young lawyer.

Quality mentoring is a priority at our firm – our Fellows receive feedback on a regular basis and we conduct two-way evaluations to discuss the progress of our work together. When funding permits, our Fellows receive a modest stipend. In exchange for your hard work, our Fellows are provided with a meaningful work experience that advances your professional growth and will be valued by potential employers. We also provide our Fellows with career guidance and support that is intended to help you secure full-time employment as a public interest lawyer.

We have been fortunate to work with the following Fellows, who successfully secured employment in the public interest sector:

-Nadia Aziz (UCLA Law School ’07) – Staff Attorney for Bay Area Legal Aid

-Laura Burgardt (NYU School of Law ’03) - Contra Costa County Deputy Public Defender

-Miya Saika Chen (American Univ. School of Law ’09) – Staff Attorney for Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights

-Briana Cummings (Columbia Law School '12) - Judicial Clerk for Hon. Leo Sorokin, U.S. District Court in Boston

-Shamus Roller (Hastings Law School ’06) - Executive Director of Sacramento Housing Alliance

-Michael J. Solis (Hastings Law School ’07) – Los Angeles County Deputy Public Defender

To apply for the Justice First Fellowship Program, please submit a cover letter, resume, and contact information for two prior work references. Applications are reviewed and positions will be filled on a rolling basis. Please mail or e-mail your application no later than November 30th to the following address:

Jenny Huang
Justice First 
180 Grand Avenue
Oakland, CA 94612
e-mail: jhuang@justicefirst.net  


Women of color are strongly encouraged to apply


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