Staff

Matt Selig

Executive Director (he/him)

Matt has advocated for health care access for consumers since the early 1990’s. He joined HLA in 2005 as a Staff Attorney and has served as Executive Director since 2009. At HLA, Matt leads Massachusetts' only non-profit, public interest law firm dedicated exclusively to health care access. During his time with HLA, Matt has worked with the organization’s outstanding staff to significantly expand HLA’s efforts to expand access to health care. HLA’s growth has included the establishment of several strategic initiatives serving children with mental illness, immigrants, consumers with unaffordable medical debt, the gender-diverse community, and people with disabilities. After receiving his undergraduate degree from Washington University in St. Louis, Matt began his professional career as a staff member for Senator Edward M. Kennedy with the United States Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources (now known as the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions). In Senator Kennedy’s office, he participated in advancing national health care legislation, including proposals to expand access to health insurance and strengthen public health programs. He left Senator Kennedy’s office to attend Suffolk University Law School where he graduated magna cum laude. Matt then worked in the Massachusetts State House as a legislative aide to State Representative Kay Khan, a champion for access to health care. In the State House, Matt drafted and helped enact various legislative and budgetary provisions including measures to improve mental health services and correctional health care.

Emely Almonte

Paralegal (she/her)

Emely joined HLA in February 2023 as a Paralegal with the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids. She is currently studying Psychology and Criminal Justice at the University of Massachusetts – Boston and expects to graduate in 2024. Emely is an experienced preschool teacher who taught for four years in two schools, a role in which she participated in monthly parent support groups. She earned her high school diploma in Early Childhood Education and received her teacher certification in 2020. In addition to her work and studies, Emely has volunteered at Head Start and Cradles to Crayons.

Brian Bermudez

Staff Attorney (he/him)

Brian is a Staff Attorney in the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids covering the Cape & Islands, based out of the Hyannis Family Resource Center. Brian comes to HLA from the Committee for Public Counsel Services -- Public Defender Division. As a Trial Attorney with CPCS, Brian was appointed to represent indigent people charged with criminal offenses in both the Fall River District Court and the Bristol County Superior Court. In that role, Brian practiced litigation skills, client-centered zealous advocacy, and procurement of community-based mental health services. Brian dedicated himself to helping clients achieve their goals in life, health, and safety, as well as to advocate for their humanity in the Courts. Prior to his years as a Trial Attorney, Brian worked in the Prisoner’s Rights Clinic at the Northeastern University School of Law, where he studied parole as well as trauma-informed advocacy. Brian is also well-versed in oral advocacy; he competed in various “mock trial” tournaments throughout his education, resulting in regional and national recognition for his outstanding performances. Brian earned his B.A. from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and earned his J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law.

Laura Bermudez

Staff Attorney (she/her)
Laura is a Staff Attorney with Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids serving Plymouth County, based in Brockton, MA. Prior to joining MHAP, Laura practiced as a trial attorney with the Committee for Public Counsel Services in the Third District and Bristol Superior Court, representing indigent individuals charged with criminal offenses and respondents in civil commitment petitions. Her experience as a public defender encompassed courtroom litigation from arraignment to trial and disposition, as well as coordination of community-based services for marginalized populations. 
 
Laura received her J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law (NUSL) in Boston in 2017. At NUSL, Laura worked in the Prisoners’ Rights Clinic, where she advocated for individuals petitioning before the parole board and worked collaboratively with clinical experts to create trauma-informed reentry plans. Northeastern Law Magazine featured her work in an article titled “Reinforcing Humanity” in their Winter 2019 issue. Laura also served as Co-Chair of Students for Sensible Drug Policy, Internal Chair for Law Students for Reproductive Health, and Secretary for Women’s Law Caucus.
 
Laura graduated cum laude from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro with a B.A. in Sociology, concentrating on Global Problems, in 2013 and studied one semester at University of Cape Town in South Africa.
 

Grace Brockmeyer

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Bio coming soon.

Jennifer Cedor

Supervising Attorney for the Immigrant Health Initiative (she/her)

Jennifer joined our Access to Care and Coverage Team in 2022! Prior to HLA, Jennifer worked at the Massachusetts Trial Court’s Boston Court Service Center providing access to justice to self-represented litigants. In this capacity, Jennifer assisted marginalized and underserved litigants navigate the judicial system in various Probate and Family and Housing Court matters. Before joining the Boston Court Service Center, Jennifer worked as a Public Defender with CPCS in the Mental Health Litigation Division. At CPCS, she represented clients who were facing civil commitment in mental health institutions.  

Jennifer received her Juris Doctor from Suffolk University Law School (“SULS”).  At SULS, Jennifer was a member of the Health and Biomedical Law Journal as a Symposium Editor and Vice President of the Health and Biomedical Law Society. Jennifer also earned a Bachelor of Art in Communication and Culture and from Clark University, graduating cum laude. The following year, she received her Master of Science, also at Clark University, in Communication with a concentration in Marketing.  Jennifer graduated with high honors and was inducted into Alpha Epsilon Lambda—an honor society for Graduate Students.  To build her background in public health and education, Jennifer completed training at the Boston Public Health Commission’s Community Health Education Center, where she became a certified Community Health Educator. 
 

Sarah Clark

Director of Finance & Operations (she/her)

Sarah joined HLA in August 2018, bringing more than a decade of experience in nonprofit finance and administration. Previous positions include nine years at Gateways: Access to Jewish Education, where she developed a passion for the disability inclusion movement. Sarah holds a BA from Wesleyan University and an MBA from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University.

Andrew P. Cohen

Director/Lead Attorney, Access to Care and Coverage Practice (he/him)
Andrew Cohen has nearly two decades of experience as a consumer advocate, community organizer, and health care policy expert. He is the Director and Lead Attorney for HLA’s Access to Care and Coverage (ACC) Practice. Since joining HLA in 2014, Andrew has helped hundreds of Massachusetts residents access needed health care services. His advocacy has led to landmark policy changes that have improved access to care for thousands of MassHealth members, new arrivals to the United States, trans and gender-diverse people, and people living with disabilities.
 
Prior to joining HLA, Andrew led a Medical Debt Resolution Program at The Access Project, a non-profit health policy group, and worked as a Senior Policy Analyst at UMass Medical School’s Center for Health Law and Economics where he focused on implementation of the federal Affordable Care Act. Andrew graduated from Northeastern University School of Law where he was a Public Interest Law Fellow. He holds a Master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Bachelor’s degree with High Honors from Wesleyan University, where he was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. Andrew is admitted to practice in Massachusetts and in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts.
 

Ellen Crowley

Supervising Attorney (she/her)

Ellen is a Supervising Attorney with the MHAP for Kids team and is one of two attorneys serving Middlesex County. Prior to joining HLA, Ellen worked as a Staff Attorney at Northeast Legal Aid and Metro West Legal Services. At Northeast Legal Aid, Ellen was in charge of the Medical-Legal Partnership program and also represented grandparents and third-party caregivers of children in legal matters. At MetroWest Legal Services, Ellen represented families and children in special education matters which often were complicated by life stressors such as substantial poverty. Ellen comes with a variety of experience in special education law, child welfare law, and issues pertaining to domestic violence.  Ellen provides child-centered, trauma-centered representation for families facing legal issues and is a compassionately zealous attorney. Outside her work, Ellen also serves as an elected member of her hometown's School Committee. She is a 2007 graduate of New England Law. 

Charles M. Delbaum

Access to Justice Fellow (he/him)

Charles M. Delbaum is an Access to Justice Fellow volunteering to assist HLA with impact litigation. He has been a public interest litigator for the past 50 years. Most recently, he worked as a class action litigator at the National Consumer Law Center (NCLC) from 2005 to 2022. In 2022, he largely, but not completely, retired, and still works on several class actions for NCLC. He has successfully pursued dozens of class actions to remedy abusive conduct by student loan lenders, mortgage servicers, payday lenders, debt collectors, and credit reporting agencies.

He began his career as a law clerk for a federal district court judge and then was a staff attorney in the law reform unit of the Cleveland (Ohio) Legal Aid Society from 1975 to 1979. There, he pursued class actions for individuals with low income, including several cases on behalf of nursing home patients. Later, as Director of Litigation at New Orleans Legal Assistance from 1992-2005, he successfully pursued actions on behalf of Medicaid applicants whose applications were not being timely processed, public housing tenants whose children were being poisoned by lead paint, and others.

He is a graduate of Amherst College and Harvard Law School.

Bettyna Elescar

Paralegal (she/her)

Bettyna joined HLA in February 2023 as a Paralegal with the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids. Prior to HLA, she worked for Salem State University as a Donor Relations and Events Aide and Resident Assistant. Bettyna is also a current student at Salem State University, where she expects to graduate in May 2023 with a Bachelor of Arts in English and Minor Concentrations in Peace Studies and French.  Outside of her course work Bettyna serves as the Vice President and Public Relations Representative of the Black Student Union.

Lucy Ellis

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Lucy joins the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids as a Staff Attorney. Prior to joining HLA, Lucy was a Staff Attorney at the American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law, where she focused on education issues impacting youth in foster care and kinship caregiving. Lucy also has experience providing direct representation to children in Essex County in education and immigration cases. Prior to attending law school Lucy worked on housing and neighborhood issues at the Boston Foundation and spent a year working in a Boston based after school program. Lucy received her J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law in 2020 and her B.A. from Northeastern University in 2011.

Jessica Fried

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Jessica is a staff attorney for the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids serving Berkshire, Hampshire, and Franklin Counties out of the Pittsfield Family Resource Center. Prior to joining HLA in November 2022, Jessica worked as a public defender and bar advocate, representing indigent clients in both trial and appellate settings. In addition, she volunteers her time as a development coordinator and member of the executive aboard for Berkshire Pride, which she helped found, and led Berkshire County's campaign to promote a ballot question to protect transgender rights. Jessica holds a B.A. in American Studies from Williams College and earned her J.D. from the New York University School of Law, after which she clerked at the U.S. District Court in Brooklyn.

Marisol Garcia

Deputy Director (she/her)

Marisol Garcia has dedicated her 25-year legal career to advocating for youth at every stage of the cradle to prison pipeline.  Since 2016, Marisol has directed the work of the Commonwealth’s largest child advocacy program – the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids (MHAP for Kids). As Deputy Director, Marisol continues as the leader of MHAP for Kids, acts as an HLA ambassador to cultivate partnerships with potential and existing financial and advocacy partners, develops, launches, and guides HLA advocacy efforts, advises existing HLA legal initiatives to help them grow, and works on administrative projects to advance HLA operations. Marisol achieved the mission of statewide expansion for MHAP for Kids, increasing capacity by over 500% and placing attorneys in Family Resource Centers (FRCs) across the state. Working with public interest groups, Marisol leads the legislative lobbying efforts – establishing a budget earmark and receiving over five million dollars in public funding. Within months of assuming her position as project director, Marisol collaborated with key stakeholders to redefine the strategic direction of the program to relocate this diversion program from the juvenile justice system to the FRCs based in the community. Marisol also coordinates ongoing data collection with the evaluation team from Boston University School of Public Health. Marisol oversees the work of the attorneys who advocate for children with unmet mental health needs to receive the care that they require to be successful at school, at home, and in the community. She has co-authored numerous articles for the American Bar Association’s Children’s Rights Committee and has presented on children’s mental health issues at statewide and national trainings. In 2022, Marisol was selected as one of Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly's Top Women of Law. Marisol joined HLA in 2015 as a mental health advocate. From 2012 to 2014, Marisol litigated before the SSA, representing disabled adults and children. From 1999 to 2011, she maintained her own law office where she specialized in juvenile justice, representing children in civil and delinquency proceedings. During that time, Marisol was also an adjunct professor at University of Massachusetts in Lowell and William James College. Marisol was a Bart J. Gordon fellow and staff attorney at the Children's Law Center of Massachusetts from 1997 to 1999. She received her JD from Northeastern University School of Law in 1997 and a BA magna cum laude from Providence College 1994.

Maria Garcia-Garcia

Paralegal (she/her)

Maria joined HLA in July 2024 as a paralegal with the ACC team. Maria graduated MIT with a B.S. in Brain and Cognitive Science in May 20024 and is a first generation college graduate. She is from San Antonio, TX and previously worked at the MIT Saxe lab assisting with baby and child development studies, as well as interned at Blueprint Medicines as a program manager. Maria says, "I love helping people. I want to be a bridge for those with the lack of resources to get the help they need. My areas of interest are mental health, child development, and the business-law intersection."

Kathleen Hackett

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Prior to joining HLA, Kathleen engaged in private practice representing parents and children in Care and Protection Petitions and Children Requiring Assistance cases for the Committee for Public Counsel Services/Children and Family Law Division.  In addition, she has experience as a Guardian Ad Litem and Court Investigator in the juvenile courts in Essex, Middlesex, and Suffolk Counties. Kathleen also worked as an Education Advocate for the Home for Little Wanderers Parent Support Program as well as for families working with the Department of Mental Health. She holds a B.A. in Political Science from the College of the Holy Cross and a law degree from Suffolk University Law School.

Salomé Kyabu Kassini

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Bio coming soon.

Trisha Kini

Paralegal (they/them)

Trisha joined HLA as a paralegal with MHAP for Kids in July 2023. Prior to HLA, Trisha served as a Health Policy and Prostate Cancer Equity Program Coordinator for a non-profit dedicated to eradicating health disparities seen in prostate cancer. They interned for Sahiyo, where they initiated a reproductive justice project exploring the implications of abortion inaccessibility on survivors of female genital cutting. Trisha has also worked as a peer mentor for a developmental services organization and as a COVID-19 contact tracer during the pandemic. They earned their Bachelors of Science in Biology and Public Health from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Trisha enjoys dancing, writing poetry, and spending time with animals.

Kathryn Koch

Medical Debt Litigation Attorney (she/her)

Kathryn is HLA's Medical Debt Litigation Attorney in the Access to Care and Coverage Practice. Prior to HLA, she served as Chief Operating Officer at Casa de Salud, a St. Louis-based health access organization. Kathryn has also worked in disability rights, language access initiatives, and care coordination for justice-involved and unhoused men. Kathryn received her law degree from Saint Louis University and master’s degree in social work from Washington University in St. Louis.

Toni Kokenis

Supervising Attorney (she/her)

Before joining the HLA team, Toni served as Assistant Regional Counsel for Boston’s Department of Children and Families where she worked closely with clinical staff on case consultations, management, and mediation. While earning her J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law, Toni clerked for First Justice Jay D. Blitzman at the Juvenile Court of Middlesex County and worked alongside healthcare professionals and education specialists at the Advocating Success for Kids program at Boston Children’s hospital. Toni continues to teach courses and workshops in Public Narrative, Community Organizing, and Legal and Ethical Issues in Child Advocacy. In addition to her law degree, Toni holds an M.Ed in Human Development and Psychology Child Advocacy from Harvard University, an M.A. in Sociology from Stanford University, and B.A. degrees in both Sociology and Human Biology from Stanford University.

Shy-Anne Laura

Senior Paralegal (she/her)

Shy-Anne joined HLA as a paralegal with MHAP for Kids in October 2022. Before HLA, Shy-Anne earned her BA in Applied Legal Studies at Suffolk University, where she was also an active member of the Legal Association, Student Government Association, and National Society of Leadership and Success. She previously worked in customer service and participated in an internship in Experimental Learning, where she focused on legal research and legal writing. Shy-Anne is a huge animal lover and volunteers her time at a local animal rescue, and is also a former cheerleader at Suffolk University.

Monica Luke

Pro Bono Paralegal (she/her)

Monica joined HLA as a pro bono paralegal with the Access to Care and Coverage Practice in July 2023. Monica is an independent mental health advocate focusing on financial barriers to accessing mental health care. Activities include legislative advocacy, parity enforcement, and creative approaches to expanding payment models and commercial insurance coverage.

Monica is on the Steering Committee for CORE Mental Health, a non-profit focused on racial equity and mental health. She is also a consultant with Massachusetts Association for Mental Health and a co-chair of the Massachusetts Mental Health Coalition. Passionate about social justice, Monica is a Racial Social Justice Ambassador for the City of Somerville and a volunteer with the Wellesley Racial Justice Initiative. Monica worked in the technology sector for over twenty years, now routinely mentoring and supporting entrepreneurs building mental health apps.

Lisa Morrow

Managing Attorney (she/her)

Lisa Morrow, Managing Attorney in HLA’s MHAP for Kids based at the Lynn Family Resource Center, advocates for children with unmet mental health needs throughout Essex County while supervising 3 other MHAP for Kids attorneys. Due to her experience and expertise, Lisa has co-authored 2 articles for the American Bar Association’s Children’s Rights Committee and has presented on special education to other attorneys at MCLE. Before she joined HLA in 2013 to work on children’s mental health issues, Lisa spent four and a half years as a staff attorney at the Children’s Law Center of Massachusetts. At CLCM, Lisa represented children in education matters as the sole attorney for an education advocacy initiative in Lawrence, MA. Lisa holds a law degree from Boston University School of Law and Bachelor of Arts degrees in both Visual Art and History from Brown University.

Simon Neely

Head of Litigation (he/him)

Simon Neely joins HLA as the Head of Litigation. Prior to joining HLA, Simon was a litigator in the Boston office of the law firm WilmerHale for approximately 10 years. While there, he represented pharmaceutical and technology companies in litigations before federal courts and disputes before agencies. Simon also maintained a robust public interest practice while at WilmerHale, including representing pro bono clients before the Social Security Administration and Boston Housing Authority, co-authoring a legal manual for representing victims of human trafficking in Massachusetts, and drafting an amicus brief in support of expanded end-of-life medical care options. In addition, Simon served as a Special Assistant District Attorney in Malden District Court for six months in 2017, where he argued numerous motions and represented the Commonwealth in several trials. Simon holds a B.A. in Humanities from Yale University, an M.T.S. from Harvard Divinity School with a focus on Religion, Ethics, and Politics, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Shelagh O’Donnell

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Shelagh is a Staff Attorney with the Mental Health Advocacy Program (MHAP) for Kids.  She is based at the Quincy Family Resource Center and provides services to families in Norfolk County.  Before joining MHAP for Kids, Shelagh spent 10 years as a Staff Attorney at the New Hampshire Public Defender, representing individuals facing criminal charges. During law school, she interned at the Office of the Federal Public Defender in Maryland and the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia.  Shelagh worked at the Innocence Project New Orleans prior to law school, investigating cases of wrongful convictions of individuals serving life without parole.  She graduated from the George Washington University Law School magna cum laude in 2014 and earned her B.A. in Political Science from Boston College.

Steph Ozahowski

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Steph joined HLA in November 2023 as a Staff Attorney with the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids, based in Lawrence. Steph is passionate about special education and kids' mental health. In her prior work at MetroWest Legal Services she focused on special education advocacy and represented families in individualized education program meetings with schools. Steph has worked on getting kids the special education services they need, in addition to handling issues of school discipline, bullying, and discrimination. She has also led trainings and clinics for community and parent groups and senior citizens to help them understand common legal issues they encounter. Steph earned her Bachelor of Arts in Social and Economic Development from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and her Juris Doctor from Northeastern University School of Law.

Kendal Poirier

Staff Attorney/Intern Coordinator (she/her)

Kendal joins the MHAP for Kids team as the staff attorney for both Bristol County and the Cape & Islands, based in the New Bedford Family Resource Center. Kendal comes to HLA from the Bristol County District Attorney's office. She spent five years supporting prosecutors in the Fall River District Court and in the Special Victims Unit, while attending law school at night and on the weekends. Kendal then transitioned to the role of Assistant District Attorney, spending four years as a prosecutor based in the Attleboro District Court. She became the lead prosecutor for the Attleboro high risk domestic violence team, overseeing complex prosecutions of repeat offenders and working with community partners to provide support to domestic violence victims. Kendal has tried dozens of cases and brings extensive litigation experience and trauma informed advocacy skills to this role. Kendal earned her B.A. from Saint Michael's College where she was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. She earned her J.D. from the University of Massachusetts School of Law.

Leah Porter

Supervising Attorney (she/her)

Leah Porter is a Staff Attorney with the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids, serving the MOC Family Resource Center in Fitchburg. She recently served as the Medical-Legal Partnership Fellow at Boston Children’s Hospital’s Office of General Counsel, helping low-income families access legal assistance to address health-related social needs. Prior to that, she worked in civil legal aid, representing parents and youth with education law matters, and senior citizens in a variety of civil matters under an elder services grant. Leah received her JD from Northeastern University School of Law, and bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University.

Katherine Purrington

Supervising Attorney for Public Programs Advocacy (she/her)

Before joining HLA, Katherine (Kate) was an Equal Justice Works Fellow at Lenox Hill Neighborhood House in New York City, where she helped immigrant clients in low-income situations access health insurance and eliminate medical debt through advocacy, appeals, and client education. In law school, she worked at two legal services organizations serving immigrant populations and was a judicial extern at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. She received her J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Law and a B.S. in Applied Psychology from New York University.

Caitlin Reed

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Caitlin is a Staff Attorney for the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids out of the Family Resource Center in Holyoke. She provides services to families in Hampden County. Prior to joining HLA, Caitlin had a private practice focused on representing kids and parents in care and protection proceedings in Juvenile Court, as well as mediating family law matters. She has extensive experience working with trauma survivors and helping people with mental health challenges navigate the legal system. Caitlin is also active with Gender Identity Validation Services, which provides free legal assistance to gender diverse people seeking name and gender marker changes. Caitlin earned her law degree and her master’s degree in public health in 2010 as part of a dual degree program with Northeastern University School of Law and Tufts University.  She also has B.A. degrees in both Biology and Religion from Mount Holyoke College.

Jason Reis

Medical Debt Advocate (he/him)

Before joining HLA, Jason Reis had extensive experience in public health project management, legal services, and healthcare advocacy. His background includes leading projects at Boston University's School of Public Health and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, where he demonstrated a commitment to advancing healthcare initiatives both domestically and internationally. Prior to this, Jason provided crucial legal assistance at the New York Legal Assistance Group’s Legal Health practice, gaining valuable experience in immigration law and access to coverage. With a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Spanish from the University of Connecticut, Jason is poised to apply his diverse skills as a Medical Debt Advocate, driven by his dedication to improving health outcomes.

Noa Reiter

Paralegal (she/her)

Noa joined HLA as a paralegal with MHAP for Kids in September 2023. Prior to HLA, Noa earned a BA in Public Health and Legal Studies at Brandeis University, where she was an active volunteer with the Right to Immigration Institute, a nonprofit providing legal and humanitarian services to immigrants in the Waltham area. During this time, she explored legal advocacy though internships at the Immigration Unit of the Legal Aid Society of New York, the International Criminal Court, and The Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of Massachusetts. Noa also fostered a love of early childhood education, working first as a gymnastics instructor and then as a preschool teaching assistant. Most recently, she worked at the Boston Bar Association/Foundation assisting with grants and board administration. Noa enjoys reading, cooking, doing yoga, and spending time with family and friends.

Vianelis Rodriguez

Head of Human Resources (she/her)

Bio coming soon.

Evan Saito

Paralegal/Intake Coordinator

Evan joined HLA as a Paralegal in May 2024, and conducts intakes for the Access to Care and Coverage Practice team. Evan graduated from Earlham College in 2022 with a B.A. in Peace and Global Studies with a concentration in Law and Justice. At Earlham, Evan was a recipient of the Corella and Bertram F. Bonner Scholarship, under which he served community organizations as an ELL Class Coordinator, Violin Instructor, and Volunteer Coordinator. In the Fall of 2022, Evan began service as a Quaker Volunteer Service Fellow with East Boston Neighborhood Health Center. At EBNHC, Evan found his passion for consumer support as a Care Navigator with a focus on housing justice. Evan enjoys cooking, running, playing violin, and taking public transit.

David Satin

Supervising Attorney (he/him)

David is a supervising attorney in the Mental Health Advocacy Program for Kids program, and is based out of the Everett Family Resource Center. Before joining HLA, David was an attorney for the Committee for Public Counsel Services in the Children and Family Law Division, where he was court appointed to represent children and parents in Care and Protection cases and Children Requiring Assistance cases at the Juvenile Court. In that role, David provided client-directed litigation and advocacy in the court, administratively, and in the community. David was also an associate attorney at a law firm, where he represented school districts in special and general education matters. David earned his Juris Doctorate from Northeastern University School of Law. 

Karen Schwartzman

Pro Bono Paralegal (she/her)
Karen joined as a pro bono paralegal in December 2020, volunteering most, if not all, of her time with the Access to Care and Coverage Team. She serves as the first point of contact with HLA for many clients, screens callers on our busy intake line, and schedules interviews with our Intake Paralegals. Additionally, Karen assists attorneys by communicating with medical providers and health insurers, processing release forms for medical and other records, and drafting correspondence to clients, medical providers, and other parties. Earlier in her career, Karen worked 13 years for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, was an assistant press secretary to Governor Michael S. Dukakis, and served as chief spokesperson for Bank of Boston before starting her own crisis management consulting practice. She is also a former member of HLA's Board of Directors.
 

Amanda Stutman

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Amanda is a Staff Attorney with the Mental Health Advocacy Program (MHAP) for Kids in Hampden County.  Her office is based in the Springfield Family Resource Center. Prior to joining the MHAP for Kids, Amanda was a Staff Attorney with Way Finders, Inc., a regional nonprofit focused on serving Western Massachusetts. Amanda supported Way Finders in offering services that helped people access and maintain affordable housing. Prior to Way Finders, Amanda practiced as a trial attorney with the Committee for Public Counsel Services throughout Hampden County. Amanda was appointed to represent indigent clients charged with criminal offenses. Amanda has also represented clients in Care and Protection cases within the Springfield and Holyoke juvenile courts. In those roles Amanda provided client-directed, zealous advocacy for individuals by litigating matters through trial/disposition.  Amanda earned her B.A. from Rollins College and received her JD from Roger Williams University School of Law in 2012.

Shannon Sullivan

Senior Paralegal (she/her)

Shannon joined HLA as the paralegal in February 2019 and conducts intakes for private and public insurance. Shannon graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 2017 with a B.A. in Liberal Arts with concentrations in Immigration, Human Rights, and Latin American studies. During college, she interned in non-profit and school-based organizations focusing on providing immigration services, ESL, and services for families and children. In 2018 she served as an AmeriCorps caseworker with Jewish Vocational Services in the Refugee Department, primarily focusing on helping parents gain access to child care to promote job readiness.

Kyra Sweeney

Staff Attorney (she/her)

Kyra is a Staff Attorney for the Access to Care and Coverage Practice. Her work focuses mainly on public programs advocacy. Prior to joining HLA in 2023, Kyra served as the N. Neal Pike Legal Fellow at the Disability Law Center, where she represented clients with disabilities in obtaining reasonable accommodations and protecting their civil rights. Kyra received her J.D. from Boston University School of Law. During law school, Kyra participated in the Civil Litigation and Justice Clinic and the school’s National Moot Court team. Kyra also has a B.A. in Public Policy Analysis from Pomona College.

Emily Tabor

Manager of Donor Relations & Events (she/her)

Emily returned to HLA in May 2024 to reprise her role as Manager of Donor Relations and Events, where she manages the Benefit Breakfast, HLA's largest fundraiser; the Legal Network; and other development and communications duties. During the 4-year interim, Emily worked at St. Stephen's Youth Programs as their Director of Operations & HR, navigating hybrid learning models for grades 1-12, training teen and young adult staff, and directing the operations at year-round and summer enrichment programs. Emily holds a B.A. in Sociology and Film from Wheaton College in Masschusetts and a certificate in Social Impact Management & Leadership from the Institute of Nonprofit Practice, affiliated with Tufts University.

Wells Wilkinson

Senior Supervising Attorney (he/him)

Wells works with HLA's commercial insurance and mental health parity teams, and advises and represents individual clients in Massachusetts with commercial insurance on their rights to access needed care. He has successfully appealed denials of expensive pharmaceuticals, ABA therapy for children with Autism, and he has helped consumers reverse unpaid claims, protecting them from medical debt. Previously, Wells worked with the consumer advocacy group Community Catalyst, indirectly advising consumers about their rights under the Affordable Care Act to enroll, to receive free preventive care, and to receive exemptions from tax penalties, among other issues. Wells has extensive experience in local grassroots organizing in Massachusetts, working on health care reform, peace issues, globalization, youth leadership development, and community organizing. He holds a B.A. in Biology from Boston University, and a law degree from New England School of Law.