Erika is a 2021 Equal Justice Works legal fellow at the Sustainable Economies Law Center. As an intern at the Law Center during the summer of 2020, Erika was inspired by communities all over the country coming together to meet their own needs and support each other through mutual aid. Through her fellowship project, she aims to help these COVID-response mutual aid groups grow into permanently organized communities that can collectively access resources and power and push for systemic change.
Erika is passionate about economic and racial justice, collective control of resources, and making the law accessible to everyone. Her interests in both economic justice and translating academic and legal jargon into plain language stem from her experiences growing up in part with a single immigrant father. She first became interested in practicing law in the solidarity economy while studying abroad in Fortaleza, Brazil. There, she visited Landless Workers’ Movement (MST) settlements and learned about collective land ownership, squatters’ rights, and collective decision making.
Erika received her B.A. in International Relations from Pomona College and her J.D. from Harvard Law School, where she was an editor of the Harvard Law Review and active in the QTPOC affinity group community.
Erika currently lives in Chicago, and she hopes to soon be licensed to practice law in both California and Illinois. In her free time, Erika enjoys crafts, sewing, cooking, singing, hiking, and gardening.