Michele Mirto: Stepping up A2J while cutting cost

As executive director of Step Up to Justice, a Tucson, Arizona-based privately funded legal aid nonprofit, Michele Mirto wields a shoestring budget and just three staff members armed with legal technology. They lead an army of volunteer lawyers in resolving low-income clients’ civil matters—mostly family law but also guardianship, consumer law, bankruptcy, and wills and probate.

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PDF: michele_mirto_a2j_cutting_cost

Associate Departs Big Law to Create Pro Se Online Startup

Although she spent the first six years of her career in Big Law, California attorney Dorna Moini always knew that her true passion was in human rights and access to justice.

After graduating from the University of Southern California Gould School of Law in 2012, Moini, who has dual citizenship in the United States and Iran, worked at Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton and then at Sidley Austin.

But Big Law practice wasn’t her calling. Her experiences gained from frequent travel between the United States and Iran, plus a fellowship as an undergraduate helping draft legislation to outlaw slavery in northwest Africa, and her pro bono work as a Big Law associate provided a window into the stark divide in access to justice here and abroad. And she was driven to do something about it.

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PDF: Associate Departs Big Law to Create Pro Se Online Startup _ Law