Deeva Shah graduated cum laude, Order of the Coif, from the University of Michigan Law School in 2017, where she was presented the Irving Stenn, Jr., award for contributions to the well-being and strength of Michigan Law. She founded the First Generation Law Students group while at Michigan Law and was also the Editor-in-Chief of the Michigan Telecommunication and Technology Law Review. She clerked on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California and is currently clerking on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Ms. Shah was the primary impetus that led to formation of LCWA, as she organized a group of current and former law clerks to send a letter in December 2017 to prominent judiciary officials encouraging them to address sexual harassment and workplace misconduct within the federal court system. Since then, Ms. Shah and the other members of LCWA have collaborated with multiple working groups within the federal judiciary to offer recommendations on effectively changing reporting structures and addressing power dynamics. Ms. Shah will be speaking at the Federal Judicial Center's National Workshop for District Court Judges about these issues. She looks forward to continuing her work with her fellow LCWA members to ensure effective and lasting change in this arena.
Jaime A. Santos graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2011 and clerked for the Honorable Raymond C. Fisher of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the Honorable George H. King, the former Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. Ms. Santos is an appellate litigation associate at Goodwin Procter LLP in Washington DC. She works on cases primarily in the Supreme Court and federal appellate and trial courts and has an active pro bono practice that focuses on immigration and Eighth Amendment issues.
Ms. Santos has been an active advocate for the advancement of women in the legal profession. She helped organize LCWA to push the judiciary to take action to address sexual harassment within the federal court system. Since January 2018, Ms. Santos and rest of LCWA have been working with the federal judiciary to study and address harassment and misconduct within the federal courts, and Ms. Santos has testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee regarding this work. Ms. Santos speaks at conferences and workshops about these issues, including the Ms. JD Conference on Women in the Law, the 2018 Appellate Judges Education Institute Summit, and the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers Fall Conference. Ms. Santos also helped found an online community of female attorneys, judges, and legal academics who tweet under the hashtag #LadyLawyerDiaries to draw attention to the achievements of women in the legal community and to raise awareness about the sexism and implicit bias that hinder women's progress in the profession.
Sara McDermott graduated Order of the Coif from UCLA Law School in 2015, where she was the recipient of the David J. Epstein public interest scholarship and was named a John Paul Stevens Public Interest Fellow for her commitment to public interest work. She clerked for the Honorable A. Wallace Tashima of the U.S. Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit and the Honorable Michael W. Fitzgerald of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. Before attending law school, Ms. McDermott was shaped by her time working at the YWCA of Greater Austin, where she developed an abiding commitment to intersectional work supporting and promoting women.
Since January 2018, Ms. McDermott has worked with the other members of LCWA to urge the federal judiciary to address sexual harassment and other forms of workplace misconduct. She has participated on an informal basis in the federal judiciary and Ninth Circuit working groups to address workplace misconduct.
Kendall Turner graduated second in her class from Stanford Law School in 2013 and clerked for the Honorable Merrick B. Garland, Chief Judge for the D.C. Circuit and Associate Justice Stephen Breyer of the U.S. Supreme Court. She is currently a litigation associate at Jenner & Block LLP, where she focuses on antitrust law and maintains an active pro bono practice. Ms. Turner has been passionate about remedying sexual harassment in the legal profession since she entered law school (where she helped run the school’s women’s group, the Women of Stanford Law). She has been a feminist (and agnostic) since her childhood church told her she couldn’t be a preacher because she was a woman.
Since December 2017, she has worked with the members of LCWA to encourage the federal judiciary to address sexual harassment and other forms of workplace misconduct. To this end, she has participated (on an ad hoc basis) in the federal judiciary’s and the D.C. Circuit’s working groups on workplace misconduct. She and Ms. Santos also wrote an article about the future of this work for the National Law Journal, and Ms. Turner participated on a panel about the MeToo movement in the legal profession during the South Asian Bar Association’s 2018 annual conference. In her spare time, Ms. Turner runs an Instagram account called Things Men Have Said To Us, which aims to raise awareness about the sexism that still pervades the legal profession and the world.
Claire Madill graduated first in her class from the University of Michigan Law School in 2015, where she was presented with the Jane L. Mixer Memorial award for outstanding contributions to activities designed to advance the cause of social justice, the Ralph M. Freeman Scholarship for excellence in criminal procedure, the Class of 1908 Memorial Scholarship for having the highest scholastic average at the beginning of her third year, and the Daniel H. Grady Prize for graduating with the highest standing in her law school class.
After graduation, she clerked for the Honorable William A. Fletcher of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the Honorable Alison J. Nathan for the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. She currently works in the appellate division of the Palm Beach County Public Defender's Office, litigating appeals on behalf of indigent clients who have been convicted of crimes. She became involved in LCWA in December 2017 after publishing an article in Slate criticizing United States Supreme Court Justices for enabling sexual harassment in the federal judiciary by hiring former Kozinski clerks. Since then, she has participated in meetings of the federal and Ninth Circuit working groups on workplace misconduct.
Priya Srinivasan graduated from UCLA Law School in 2017, where she earned the Masin Family Academic Excellence Award. She was Managing Editor of the UCLA Law Review and an active member of Law Women, the South Asian Law Students Association, and Law WATCH–an organization tracking hate crime incidents and legislation. Ms. Srinivasan is currently a law clerk on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. She and the other LCWA members have been collaborating with working groups established by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, the Ninth Circuit, and the D.C. Circuit to address sexual harassment in the federal judiciary.
Jamila G. Benkato graduated magna cum laude from the University of California, Irvine School of Law in 2016, where she received Pro Bono High Honors for her over 200 hours of pro bono work in support of various public interest causes. Ms. Benkato was an active member of the Women's Law Society and the Student Bar Association, which she chaired from 2014-2015. At UCI Law, she received the UCI Law Legacy Award for her contributions to the law school, and thrice received the school's Student Leader Award, reflecting her active role on campus. After graduation, she clerked for the Honorable David O. Carter for the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. Ms. Benkato is currently an attorney at Protect Democracy, where she focuses on civil litigation. In 2020, she will return to the West Coast to clerk for the Honorable Jacqueline H. Nguyen for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.