A few weeks ago, the CBF Justice Entrepreneurs Project welcomed five fantastic attorneys into the program. The “Fab Five,” as they’ve come to be known, are excited to build the type of client-centric firms that embody the principles of the JEP, committed to providing affordable services to the underserved. The new JEPers will join over 50 attorneys currently in the JEP Network, all of whom are showing that offering legal services for set fees can expand our community’s access to quality legal assistance while providing practitioners a sustainable income.
And though the Fab Five are the fourteenth group to join the JEP—and thus the beneficiaries of wisdom gained by seven years of experimentation, innovation, and risk taking by prior JEPers—they’ll be pioneers in their own right. The Fab Five will be the first cohort to work through the ever-evolving JEP curriculum at the JEP’s new official headquarters, right in the heart of the loop at 73. W. Monroe. These JEPers will have easier access to their hotline shifts at CARPLS, shorter trips to their six-month legal aid residencies, and—most exciting to the JEP alumni who continue to offer mentorship, assist with training, and make use of the office—just a couple blocks walk to the courts.
With the new central JEP location, you’ll be even more likely to see these new JEPers around town. You could catch Michelle Milner or Brian Nelligan as they go between JEP HQ 2.0 and their pro bono residency at Chicago Volunteer Legal Services. Brian will be building a firm focused on serving the South Suburbs with real estate and estate planning help, while Michelle will focus on serving elderly populations across Chicago. You might see Kate Eller in transit from the National Immigrant Justice Center, where she’ll be supplementing her social work background with immigration law experience to build a holistic immigration law firm. Sussethe Renteria will also incorporate immigration law into her practice, with some family law counsel, as she builds a firm focused on helping people facing criminal law issues. Sussy, a Far North Sider, will serve a residency with a CBF partner organization that works on criminal law matters. Last, but certainly not least, Yolanda Mohammad will be building a consumer debt-focused practice to meet the needs of people connected to the various South Side organizations she already supports. Yolanda will be working with the team at Legal Aid Chicago for her pro bono residency.
We’re as excited to welcome these Fab Five attorneys as we are to move to JEP HQ 2.0!