Maria Ott joined The Catholic University of America (CUA), Columbus School of Law as the Assistant Director of Pro Bono and Public Interest Career Development. She received her J.D. and Certificate in Comparative and International Law from the Columbus School of Law and earned her B.A in French Literature and M.S.Ed. in Intercultural Communications from the University of Pennsylvania.
While at law school, Maria participated in an externship researching law and policy pro bono for the Archdiocese of Timor Leste. Upon graduation, she briefly served as a judicial reform consultant through USAID in Timor Leste and was secretary on the board of the US-East Timor Society.
Admitted to practice in the District of Columbia and Maryland, Maria was a manager in Crowell & Moring’s antitrust group where she received the George Bailey Pro Bono Award for her pro bono work in immigration. After joining the litigation group at O’Melveny & Myers (O’Melveny), Maria began a pro bono practice representing students with disabilities, was selected by O’Melveny as a Public Interest Law Fellow in 2021 during which she represented students with disabilities at Disability Rights Maryland, and joined the boards of local and national organizations which advance the rights of persons with speech-related disabilities.
Maria is fluent in Portuguese and French, is passionate about the performing arts, and lives in Kensington, Maryland with her husband and daughter.