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Lorraine Lalli's picture

Assistant Dean Lalli is a magna cum laude graduate of Spelman College, where she majored in Philosophy and earned membership in Phi Beta Kappa. She received her Juris Doctor degree, also magna cum laude, from Roger Williams University School of Law in 2001. As a law student, she won numerous...

Lorraine Lalli's Post

Coming Home

Posted by Lorraine Lalli on 08/25/2015 at 10:22 AM

When I joined the RWU Law administration in 2005, I brought a unique perspective as an alumna. Having graduated in 2001, I was familiar with the RWU Law student experience. I already knew the faculty and most of my new colleagues.  Most importantly, I was fully invested in the future success of the law school and our students, based on our shared experience.

This fall, three alumnae are coming home to RWU Law to join me.  Drawing on their own student experiences and their outstanding legal practices, they will lead our flagship experiential programs to provide our students with hands-on, practical learning opportunities.

Katie Ahern '07Katie Ahern '07 joins RWU Law in fall 2015 as Director of the Start-up Business Clinic, where students work directly with nonprofit and small-business clients to gain practical transactional lawyering skills. This clinic involves direct client interaction and involvement with the nonprofit and small business community in Rhode Island, and teaches students to represent clients in business-related transactions. Katie returns to RWU Law with tremendous experience from a large Rhode Island Law firm. Prior to directing the clinic, she served as an associate at Hinkley, Allen & Snyder where her legal practice focused on all areas of federal, state and local tax matters affecting businesses, individuals, governmental entities and tax-exempt organizations.  She has an LL.M. in taxation from Boston University School of Law and teaches business-law classes at the University of Rhode Island.  Katie is a 2011 recipient of the Providence Business News "Forty Under 40" award and a 2015 Super Lawyers Rising Star. Last year, she served as the interim director of the business clinic and is back this year in a permanent capacity.

Jenna Hashway '11Jenna Hashway '11 returns to RWU Law as Professor of Legal Practice, our legal research and writing program, and Director of the Judicial Externship Program that places law students in the chambers of federal and state court judges for academic credit including the Rhode Island Supreme Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.  Jenna was a standout student at RWU Law and graduated first in her class in 2011, was editor-in-chief of the Law Review, and received sixteen CALI awards for the highest grade in a class.  Since 2011 she has clerked for Judge Arthur Votolato of the Bankruptcy Court for the District of Rhode Island, Chief Justice Paul Suttell of the Rhode Island Supreme Court, and Judge O. Rogeriee Thompson of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.  Jenna has been teaching Law of Torts and Law of Contracts at the Community College of Rhode Island, and she has assisted in teaching in our Jump Start pre-orientation program for incoming 1Ls for several years.   

Deborah Gonzalez '07Deborah Gonzalez ’07 has returned to RWU Law as Director of the Immigration Law Clinic.  Deborah knows the clinic well.  She served as interim director for two years while maintaining and active immigration law practice in East Providence, Rhode Island. Under her direction, clients have won important immigration victories.  Deborah is experienced in all aspects of immigration law including, deportation and removal cases, family and business immigration cases. Deborah brings a client-focused approach to clinical education and an unmatched commitment to public interest work.  Earlier this year, Deborah received RWU Law’s inaugural Alumni Public Interest Champion for Justice Award in recognition of her work with indigent clients.  Last spring, she led a group of law students on an Alternative Spring Break trip to San Antonio to a detention center run by ICE and a private company that houses women and children who have crossed the border into Texas. Deborah is also founder of the Brazilian Information Group, which provides Brazilian and Portuguese-speaking communities with information regarding a variety of topics in an effort to help the community to adjust to life in the United States. Deborah attended RWU Law as a part-time student and graduated in 2007.