There’s something so nerve wracking about getting your photo taken. Maybe it’s from memories of school picture day and the emotions that go with it. Was my hair in place? Did I have anything in my teeth? Were my eyes even open for the photo?
In December 2022 during our Winter Staff Retreat, Law Center staff gathered as many of us as we could to take a group photo. (We missed you Hope, Janelle, and Sue!) There was big “school picture day” energy in the room — with lots of silly faces, giggles, and nerves. In a time when anyone can whip out their phone and capture a beautifully rendered picture, gathering for a staged photo shoot with a professional photographer felt ceremonious. Even more so because Law Center staff hadn’t all been photographed together since well before the pandemic. We were a different configuration back then. Who are we now? No longer floating heads contained in our Zoom squares; we were bodies standing tall next to each other, feeding off of each other's presence. We’re a team.
That same day, after our group photo was taken, we built an altar to our movement ancestors. Dozens of the photos included past staff members, volunteers, board members, and community members who have supported us over the years, reminding us of the many people who have passed through the Law Center, shaping the culture and the way we do our work. Our new group photo brings this current crew of SELC staff into conversation with all of the orgs’ past and future iterations. We are a collective of people who choose to be in relationship to each other, trying our best to make the world better through a shared vision — building upon the foundation of those who came before, and hopefully those who come after.
If you want to learn more about the individual staff members at the Law Center, check out our team page here.
The Cult of Experience
Staff Attorney Erika Sato has been practicing law for little over a year now. When most newbie attorney’s might feel tentative or unsure about their work, Erika shares in this blog post why she feels confident in the quality of legal services she gives to her clients. She outlines a few core principles that guide how Law Center staff approach legal work, which give her confidence to explore non-traditional options and understand the needs and culture of her clients.
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to the following volunteers for helping out at our Legal Cafes at least twice last year:
Michael Trujillo: 25 times!
Daniel Irvin: 22 times!
Harry Stanwyck : 21 times!
Brett Heeger: 5 times!
Ariana Shaffer: 5 times!
Alex Glancy: 4 times!
Jen Barnette: 4 times!
Elisa Shieh: 4 times!
Ellen Leonard: 3 times!
Gregory Jackson: 3 times!
Jaclyn Tran: 3 times!
Without your help, we wouldn’t have been able to serve the 500 clients that we served from January through December of last year.
Looking for a community of like minded legal professionals cultivating the legal roots of just and resilient economies? Sign up to volunteer at our Resilient Communities Legal Cafe!
Favorite Reads of 2023
It’s that time of year when Law Center staff share what books they loved reading back in 2022. We have cookbooks, self-help books, fiction, history, and of course, legal books on this year's list. We love discussing, learning, and growing from the richness of books and hope our recommendations grow your world view a little bit, too.