The FAIR Fellowship
Promoting Diversity. Advancing Employee Justice.
The FAIR Fellowship (formerly called The Sanford Heisler Public Interest Diversity Fellowship) is a unique fellowship that enables a new attorney to work full-time for two consecutive six-month terms at (1) Legal Aid at Work and (2) a law firm affiliated with the California Employment Lawyers Association (CELA), an organization of more than 1200 workers’ rights advocates throughout California. FAIR funds a Fellow with salary and benefits during the first six months the fellow is working at Legal Aid at Work. The applicant will then be matched with a CELA affiliated firm for the second six month term and be paid a salary and benefits by that entity.
Stay tuned for information and application deadlines for the 2018-2019 FAIR Fellowship.
The John D. Weiss Employee Justice Summer Clerkship Award is given to the top law student chosen from the yearly Employee Justice Summer Clerkship program, who exemplifies the attributes that John D. Weiss demonstrated during his life: a person with a generous heart who gives without expecting recognition, although so deserving; a person who demonstrates a fierce passion for achieving justice for workers; and, a person with an inspiring ability to overcome adversity. The Weiss Fellow will also be recognized with an additional stipend from FAIR. The namesake of this honor, John D. Weiss, was instrumental in helping CELA leaders to establish FAIR and generously supported the organization until his untimely passing in 2013.
The 2017 winner of the John D. Weiss Employee Justice Summer Clerkship Award is Brisa Velazquez Berber, who will work at Legal Aid at Work. Ms. Berber was selected based on her strong commitment to fighting for workers' rights, perseverance, and the ability to succeed despite growing up with hardship and challenges.
In August and September 2016, volunteer members of CELA's Diversity Outreach Committee and other CELA members held on- campus interviews at participating law schools to interview law students interested in the Employee Justice Summer Clerkship. During the interviews, the interviewers provided personalized information regarding CELA members and member-firms who were seeking to hire qualified summer law clerks and had agreed to pay their summer clerks at least $8,000 for a total of ten weeks over the summer. From the initial interviews, Diversity Outreach Committee members and designated CELA interviewers compiled their comments and impressions of all the candidates for CELA members. Also included in each student profile were the student’s resume and transcript and a short statement of interest from the candidate. After participating firms reviewed the applications and selected summer law clerks, a subcommittee designated by FAIR, in coordination with the CELA Diversity Outreach Committee, selected 15 Employee Justice Summer Clerks, who will receive $4,000 in fellowship funding for the summer to supplement the salary they receive from the member-firm.
The 2017 Employee Justice Summer Clerkship has successfully matched student applicants with firms. CELA would like to congratulate the recipients and the firms that have hired these well deserving law students:
• Annie Banh (GGU School of Law), hired by Leonard Carder LLP, Oakland
• Brisa Velazquez Berber (UC San Diego), hired by Legal Aid at Work, San Francisco
• Brian Beyersford (Berkeley Law), hired by Weinberg, Roger & Rosenfeld (Los Angeles)
• Jacqueline Bowers (USC Law), hired by Hadsell Stormer & Renick, Pasadena
• Young Choi (Columbia Law School), hired by Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Los Angeles
• Nisha Giridhar (Berkeley Law), hired by Bryan Schwartz Law, Oakland
• Emma Halling (Berkeley Law), hired by Nichols Kaster, LLP, San Francisco
• Shajuti Hossain (Duke University School of Law), hired by Goldstein Borgen Dardarian & Ho, Oakland
• David Nahmias (Berkeley Law), hired by California Rural Legal Assistance, Oakland
• Cassie Peabody (USF School of Law), hired by Legal Aid at Work, San Francisco
• Jose Rojas (UC Davis School of Law), hired by Beeson, Tayer & Bodine, Sacramento
• Richard Treadwell (Berkeley Law), hired by Davis, Cowell & Bowe, San Francisco
• Jessica Villegas (UC Davis School of Law), hired by Legal Aid at Work
• Ken Wang (UC Davis School of Law), hired by Leonard Carder LLP, Oakland
• Miguel Zavala (Berkeley Law), hired by
Outten & Golden, San Francisco
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