Suzanne Lawson

2011 Public Interest Grant Recipient

Suzanne Lawson is a 2011 recipient of the Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles Fran Kandel Public Interest Grant. The Grant funded the creation of an informational pamphlet which will serve as a guide for self-represented families attending daytime curfew citation hearings in Los Angeles County. The pamphlet also includes information about resources, such as tutoring, special education, and mental health services, which can help families address some of the underlying causes of truancy and reduce school dropout among citation recipients. Additionally, the Grant funded the production of a power-point presentation instructing community-based organizations on how to help clients resolve daytime curfew citations. The pamphlet and power-point presentation will be available on the Mental Health Advocacy Services, Inc. website and distributed to community organizations throughout the county.

Before entering law school, Ms. Lawson worked for the Riverside County Department of Mental Health where she put together grant applications, budgets, and financial analysis in support of mental health services for children who were victims of abuse and their families. Through her work and volunteer experience, Ms. Lawson has developed her interest in promoting access to mental health, educational, and legal services among members of underserved communities.

Ms. Lawson is in her second year at the University of California Irvine School of Law, where she serves as an associate member and a lead article editor of the UC Irvine Law Review, a board member for the Children’s Advocacy Group, and a member of the Public Interest Support Committee. In her first year, Ms. Lawson received a 2011 UC Irvine Public Interest Law Foundation Grant in support of her summer internship with Public Counsel Law Center’s Federal Pro Se Clinic, as well as a 2011 UC Irvine Pro Bono Achievement Award for her work in the areas of family law and farmworker labor rights. The University of Southern California awarded Ms. Lawson a B.S. in Business Administration in 2007.