Charlie Blodnieks (they/them), Director of Communications
Charlie is an educator, fledgling organizer, student abolitionist, and poet currently working as the Director of Communications (previously, Charlie was the Program Assistant in Communications and Mass Defense). Charlie has a background in non-profit administrative work, health justice organizing, publication design, poetry, and teaching. Before they worked at the NLG, Charlie was a barista and remains an avid at-home brewer and baker. Their poetic work is published in the Adroit Journal, Muzzle Magazine, and Write About Now. They graduated from Columbia University and completed a senior thesis on Leslie Feinberg's Stone Butch Blues, about transmasculine and working class liberatory histories.
Before coming to the NLGF, Daniel was Director of Finance and Development at the Sylvia Rivera Law Project (SRLP), a legal project organized by-and-for low income transgender people and transgender people of color. Prior to SRLP, Daniel worked as a Legal Program Associate at the Center for Reproductive Rights. He is a Certified Not-for-Profit Accounting Professional, a Rockwood Leadership Institute Alumni and a 2011-12 21st Century Pipeline Project Fellow.
Katie Adamides (she/they), Interim Executive Director
Katie is an attorney who co-founded the Guild’s Rochester, New York chapter. She previously served as New York State Director for the Fines and Fees Justice Center and has worked in direct civil legal services developing medical-legal partnership programs. Before returning to her hometown of Rochester, Katie lived and worked in Navajo Nation, the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, and New York City. She’s a graduate of CUNY Hunter College and Berkeley Law.
Kimmie David (she/her), Director of Operations
Lisa Drapkin (she/her), Director of Membership
Prior to joining NLG full time, Lisa worked for several other nonprofits in member support roles, including the Foundation Center, the National Police Accountability Project of the NLG, and Vegan Outreach. In addition, she is involved with the efforts of the NLG's Mass Incarceration Committee and Prison Legal Project, NYC Books through Bars, and well as additional prison support groups. A lifelong New Yorker, she has a B.A. in English from CUNY Queens College.
Linh Vinh (she/her), Director of Mass Defense
Linh is a second-generation Vietnamese American anti-racist activist who helped build up the Central Virginia NLG Chapter starting in 2017. She has a background in community organizing, legislative advocacy, and protest legal support. She holds a B.A. in sociology from the College of William & Mary and an M.A. in sociology, specializing in community mobilization, critical race theory, and law from the University of Virginia. Linh sees great value in speculative fiction and the community reclamation of modern myths and folktales from corporations through radical, anti-capitalist storytelling initiatives such as Archive of Our Own and other projects through the Organization of Transformative Works.
Traci Yoder (she/her), Director of Research and Education
Traci Yoder is the NLG Director of Research and Education. Before coming to the National Office, she was the Coordinator for the NLG Philadelphia Chapter and the Legal Worker Vice-President of the NLG National Executive Committee. Traci is the former Executive Editor of the NLG Review and has published articles and reports on NLG history, mass surveillance, drug policy, legal education, environmental activism, the far right, and policing of protests. In addition to her NLG work, she has volunteered with projects such as the Radical Archives of Philadelphia, the Wooden Shoe Book Collective, and Interference Archive of Brooklyn. Her graduate work includes Anthropology, Gender Studies, and Library Studies, and she is a practicing psychoanalyst and tarot card reader.
Elena L. Cohen (she/her/hers), President: Elena is a partner at Cohen Green PLLC ("Femme Law"), a small firm dedicated civil rights litigation & to serving NYC's LGBTQ community. In addition to being NLG president, Elena is a past president of the NYC-NLG & co-chair of its Mass Defense Committee.
Suzanne Adely (she/her), President-Elect: Suzanne is the first Arab-American president of the National Lawyers Guild, co-chair of the International Committee and member of the bureau of the IADL. She has worked as an organizer & human rights and labor advocate in New York, Chicago, Egypt, India and elsewhere.
Jilisa Milton (she/her), Vice President: Jilisa is an Alabama-based civil rights attorney, policy analyst, social worker, and relational strategist. She is Vice Chair of NLG’s Disability Rights Committee. She is a survivor of police violence and a founder of Black Lives Matter Birmingham.
Danielle Gregor (she/her), Secretary
Joelle Eliza Lingat (she/they), Treasurer and TUPOCC Co-Chair
Luna Martinez Gomez (she/her), Student National Co-Vice President: From coordinating the National Student Movement in my native Mexico to starting a nonprofit in Zapatista communities, my practice is grounded in an anti-oppression analysis. At Berkeley Law, I work with orgs that seek collective liberation, such as LSJP, WOCC, and Radical Queers.
Samantha-Rae Hook (she/her), National Student Co-Vice President: Sam is a board member for the NLG student chapter at UMass Law (class of 2022). She is also a Legal Observer and a hotline coordinator for the Massachusetts Mass Defense Committee.
Sarah Coffey (she/her), Legal Worker Co-Vice President
Andreya García-Ponce de Leon, Legal Worker Co-Vice President: Andreya is rooted at San Bernardino Free Them All and E-board member at Root&Rebound. She is devoted to Criminal Justice policy reform and proud to be part of the empowering Movement to restore power to all oppressed people.
Mumia Abu-Jamal (he/him), Jailhouse Lawyer VP Emeritus
Sarah David Heydemann (she/her), NLG Labor and Employee Committee Representative: She is a labor and workers' center organizer turned lawyer. She is co-chair of the NLG Labor and Employment Committee and works as Senior Counsel at the National Women's Law Center, working to advance the Center’s workplace justice agenda.
Maggie Ellinger-Locke (she/her), Mass Defense Committee Chair: She is a movement lawyer based in the Washington DC area.
Lydia X.Z. Brown, Disability Justice Committee Chair: is an organizer and lawyer addressing violence against multiply-marginalized disabled people. They teach at Georgetown and founded the Fund for Community Reparations for Autistic People of Color’s Interdependence, Survival & Empowerment.
Kira Kelley (she/they), Anti-Racism Committee Co-Chair: Kira is a co-chair of the Anti-Racism Committee and lives in Vermont
Ashlyn Ruga, Anti-Racism Committee Co-Chair
Anthony Prince, Housing Committee Co-Chair
Sarah White (she/her), Housing Committee Co-Chair: She is a housing attorney practicing in Connecticut.
Jackelyn Mariano, International Committee Co-Chair
Jeanne Mirer, International Committee Co-Chair
Ría Thompson-Washington, TUPOCC Co-Chair
Michael Galvan, Queer Caucus Co-Chair
Jaelyn Miller, Queer Caucus Co-Chair
Sirine Shebaya, National Immigration Project Executive Director and N.E.C. Representative: A longtime immigrant rights advocate, she focuses on combining litigation and public campaign strategies to defend and advance the rights of immigrant communities of color.
Rachel A. Pickens (she/her), National Police Accountability Project Executive Director and N.E.C. Representative
Justice Gatson (she/her), Midwest co-RVP: Justice is a Community Organizer with the ACLU of Missouri and works on the policy team, helping to advance rights for communities that face racism and systemic inequities. Justice was recognized by The Pitch KC in their "Best of Kansas City" series.
Kathleen Garbacz, Midwest Co-RVP
Scott Kampas, Midwest Co-RVP
Raymundo Rojas, Texoma Co-RVP: Ray Rojas practices criminal, worker-side employment, and immigration in Southern New Mexico and West Texas. From El Paso, Texas, Rojas received his degrees from UT El Paso and his law degree from the University of Kansas.
Megan Rue, Texoma Co-RVP
Reighlah Collins, Southern Co-RVP
Liliya Oliferuk, Southern Co-RVP
Shahily Negrón, Northeast Co-RVP: Shahily is currently a 3L and plans to be a Public Defender when she passes the bar exam. She joined the NLG as soon as she could her 1L year. She hopes to continue to be a part of the NLG family for many years to come.
Nate Fox, Northeast Co-RVP
Sasha Novis, Far West Co-RVP
Delia Metoyer, Far West Co-RVP
Aneesa Khan, Mid-Atlantic Co-RVP: Aneesa Khan is an Assistant Public Defender in the Maryland Office of the Public Defender's Baltimore City's Juvenile Division, where she represents children in delinquency and criminal matters. She is a member of both the DC and Maryland NLG local chapters, where she provides training, support, and assistance to the Mass Defense Committees. Aneesa was a founder and former president of the University of Baltimore School of Law's NLG chapter, and was the 2017 recipient of the C.B. King Award at the NLG National Convention in Washington, DC.
Andi Pla, Northwest Co-RVP
Junga Cha (she/they), Northwest Co-RVP
Shoshanna Silverberg, Southwest Co-RVP: Shoshanna's work as a civil liberties & restorative justice advocate serves as the basis for her work with companies concerned with unwinding the failed War on Drugs. She assists management teams in problem-solving within the intersection of compliance & the alignment of corporate activity with social movements.
Z Williams, Southwest Co-RVP
NLG National Office and National Executive Committee
The NLG National Office is the administrative hub of the organization, connecting our members, chapters, committees, and projects. National Office staff are responsible for administering membership, handling media and other communications, creating and distributing Guild publications, coordinating the annual convention, organizing national campaigns, producing educational resources, fundraising, and providing support to Guild members and entities.
The National Executive Committee (NEC) is the governing body for the NLG. Generally, it meets four times a year and includes:
- National President
- National Vice-President
- National Treasurer
- National Secretary
- National Office Executive Director
- 2 Student Vice-Presidents
- 1 Legal Worker Vice-President
- 1 Jailhouse Lawyer Vice-President
- 9 Regional Vice-Presidents
- 2 TUPOCC Chairs
- 2 National Office Representatives
- 10 Committee, Project, and Task Force Representatives
Between NEC meetings, important and emergency decisions are made by the Executive Council (EC) of the NLG. This is made up of the executive-level NEC members: President, Vice-President, Treasurer, Secretary, Executive Director, Senior Student VP, and Legal Worker VP.
NEC meetings are open to any current Guild members and we welcome your input. We ask that any requests for an item to be added to the agenda be sent to the National Office or the President at least 30 days before the next meeting. NEC meetings are usually held in January, April, August, and October.
All current Guild members are eligible to run for a position on the NEC. Executive-level elections are held at the annual convention, and other seats are decided by the regions, committees, and caucuses. For more information on the NEC, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.