Staff


Christy England, Paul H. Tobias Attorney Fellow

(415) 296-7629 x107 | cengland@employeerightsadvocacy.org

Prior to joining The Institute, Christy worked for the Transgender Law Center and the EEOC. She also served as a Judicial Extern for the Honorable Judge Edward Chen. While in law school, she focused primarily on civil rights and conducted original research on the subject, particularly in the context of employment discrimination. She also worked with Professor Noah Zatz for a project entitled “Get to Work or Go to Jail,” which analyzes the labor requirements imposed on parolees and misdemeanants by the criminal justice system, and the fact that this population is uniquely vulnerable to mistreatment by employers. Christy earned her BA from UC Berkeley and her JD from UCLA School of Law.

FlegelL_employee_rights_advocacy_instituteLaura M. Flegel, Director of Law & Policy
(202) 898-2880 | lflegel@nelahq.org

Laura M. Flegel has served as The Institute’s Director of Law & Policy as well as the Legislative & Public Policy Director of the National Employment Lawyers Association since February 2015. Immediately prior to joining NELA and The Institute, Ms. Flegel served as the Legislative Counsel to the District of Columbia City Council’s Committee on Human Services where she worked on a variety of workers’ rights legislation, such as the Minimum Wage Act, the Wage Theft Prevention Act, and a Ban the Box measure. She also worked for 18 years on civil rights, disability rights, and poverty law issues as the Director of Legal Services & Interim General Counsel for the Whitman-Walker Clinic, and as the Director of Legal Advocacy and Education at the Quality Trust for Individuals with Disabilities. Ms. Flegel is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin School of Law.

HofkinL_employee_rights_advocacy_instituteLeah A. Hofkin, Director of Development
(415) 296-7629 x221 | lhofkin@employeerightsadvocacy.org

Leah A. Hofkin joined The Institute and the National Employment Lawyers Association as Director of Development in 2010 with nearly 15 years of fundraising experience in the San Francisco Bay Area nonprofit community. She was Director of Development for Magic Theatre for five seasons, managed the institutional giving program for the American Conservatory Theater for four, and spent three years at the Bay Area Discovery Museum. Ms. Hofkin began her career as a lawyer, working for prominent firms in New York, Washington, DC, and Silicon Valley. She has served on a number of nonprofit boards, including the Art Monastery Project, Jewish Voice for Peace, Keneset HaLev – Community of the Heart, and the San Francisco Children’s Art Center. Ms. Hofkin holds a B.A. with distinction from George Washington University, a J.D. from Columbia University, and a master’s degree from Golden Gate University.

MaokiK_employee_rights_advocacy_instituteKaren Maoki, Interim Executive Director
(415) 296-7629 x203 | kmaoki@nelahq.org

Karen Maoki joined the staff of the National Employment Lawyers Association in 2000 and now serves as Director of Operations for The Institute and NELA. Ms. Maoki came to NELA from organized labor, having worked with UNITE HERE Local 2850 as an organizer intern and, later, their bookkeeper. In her free time, she has volunteered with Berkeley Needle Exchange Emergency Distribution and Celebration of Craftswomen, a benefit for The Women’s Building of San Francisco. Ms. Maoki is a graduate of Scripps College in Claremont, California.

ValverdeP_employee_rights_advocacy_institutePedro A. Valverde, Digital Communications Associate &
Technology Manager

(415) 296-7629 x105 | pvalverde@nelahq.org

Pedro Valverde joined the National Employment Lawyers Association in August 2000 as the Member Services Coordinator and is now the Technology & Office Administrator. Prior to joining the NELA team, he worked at Pillsbury, Madison & Sutro in the Environment, Land Use & Natural Resources practice group. Mr. Valverde relocated to the Bay Area 18 years ago from Austin, Texas where he worked for both defense and plaintiff firms. He is proud to call Texas A&M University his alma mater.

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