Monica Goracke

Position: Executive Director, Oregon Law Center
Past Fellows

Monica Goracke, 2002-2004 LD Access/ David Boies Fellow

What was your focus at DRA? I worked on a lot of different things, but one case addressing inaccessible military family housing at Fort Lewis really stood out. I took the initial intake phone call, and was on the case all the way through filing it in federal court. I was given so much responsibility, but at the same time, Sid and Larry gave me so much support. They taught me how to be a lawyer.

How did your fellowship affect what you went on to do? DRA treats fellowships as a way to nurture future leaders, giving new lawyers a huge boost up with experience they wouldn’t get anywhere else. At DRA I learned to have confidence in arguing my position; to never be timid but to be bold on behalf of my clients. Additionally, DRA really improved my legal writing, which has helped me tremendously throughout my career. When I draft a complaint or a motion, I’m drawing on the skills I learned at DRA. I’m committed to making it an outstanding work product, showing defendants that it’s not going to be an easy case; that my clients will have excellent legal advocacy.

What are you working on now? The Oregon Law Center is a legal services provider, so we help low-income clients on issues like housing, employment, and public benefits. My fellowship confirmed that I loved public interest law and that I wanted to use my law degree to provide not just access to representation but justice for people who have been left behind or pushed aside by society.

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