2018 – Dolores Ayala
As Senior Counsel for Employment Law & Litigation for the Allstate Insurance Company since 2016, and former Senior Counsel for the Walgreen Company, Dolores Ayala has demonstrated a steadfast commitment to pro bono service. She is a pro bono volunteer, advocate, recruiter, and leader, and has significantly expanded the pool of in-house attorneys who provide access to justice through their pro bono work.
Dolores took on her first pro bono case right out of law school, which sparked her career-long commitment to public service. Her commitment has accelerated ever since. At Walgreens, she and a colleague launched the company’s legal pro bono program, introducing the legal department to organizations like the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC), Cabrini Green Legal Aid (CGLA), the Center for Disability and Elder Law and Equip for Equality and engaging their in-house colleagues to participate in their programs. She soon became a member of NIJC’s Leadership Board, actively recruiting members of the legal community to represent asylum seekers and immigrant youth eligible for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
Dolores’ dedication to pro bono has continued since joining Allstate. Fluent in Spanish, she continues to represent refugees in their quests for asylum She spearheaded Allstate’s Asylum Project, arranging for her colleagues’ training and collaboration with attorneys from outside law firms to collectively represent 25 asylum seekers fleeing persecution in Mexico and Central America.
Dolores is also a passionate supporter of Allstate’s Second Chance program, partnering with CGLA to help remove barriers to housing and employment caused by contact with the criminal justice system. Dolores successfully represented a client referred by CGLA in his petition for Executive Clemency before the Prisoner Review Board, paving the way for him to achieve his dream of becoming a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who dedicates his own life to helping others overcome the scourges of addiction and domestic violence.