Jessica Kleinman, a member of the Columbus School of Law’s Class of 2014, has been awarded a prestigious Equal Justice Works Fellowship for her proposal to address asthma problems among the children of low-income families in Washington, D.C.
Kleinman, who already holds a Master’s Degree in public health and worked in the health policy arena prior to law school, is uniquely qualified to launch the innovative project.
She began developing a proposal nearly a year ago with the Children’s Law Center (CLC) that would provide legal services, outreach and advocacy to area families who are confronting health-harming legal barriers to managing their children’s asthma.
The project aims to expand CLC’s existing medical-legal partnership with the Children's National Health System and Mary’s Center for Maternal and Child Health Care to provide an integrated approach to legal and health care services for families in need in order to help children achieve healthier outcomes.
The highly sought after two-year postgraduate appointments allow Fellows to design projects that address a range of legal issues including domestic violence, homelessness, community economic development, immigration, civil rights, juvenile justice, employment rights, health care, consumer fraud, and environmental justice. Equal Justice Works received a record-setting 477 applications for the 2014 class and awarded 61 two-year postgraduate legal fellowships to begin this fall.
The road has been long. Sponsored by Johnson & Johnson and Patterson Belknap, Kleinman submitted her application to Equal Justice Works in September, stating “Working on this project [will] be a dream come true for me in every imaginable way.” She interviewed with the funders in New York City in late February and was offered a fellowship in March.
Kleinman joins the Equal Justice Works ranks following 2013 alumna Madeline Taylor Diaz, who was also awarded a fellowship during her final year of law school.