Dawn Withers, a new asbestos attorney here at Kazan Law, already has a track record for helping to balance the scales of justice by providing legal help to those who need it most. During her years as a student at Golden Gate University’s School of Law, where she graduated with honors in 2013, she worked with the California Appellate Project, assisting clients on death row; and the Homeless Advocacy Project, representing indigent clients facing eviction.
“Performing public service is part of a healthy functioning democracy,” Dawn said when we spoke about her work with these two San Francisco legal nonprofits.
At Golden Gate, Dawn participated in the Honors Lawyering Program in which students attend intensive classes during the summer and then work full-time at a legal non-profit for the fall semester.
“I wanted experience in the criminal justice system,” Dawn explained, ”so I chose to work with prisoners on death row for those four months.”
Dawn assisted a team of attorneys and investigators who worked with death row inmates, including those at San Quentin. Located in nearby Marin County, San Quentin is home to the state’s only gas chamber and death row for male condemned inmates.
“I learned how important it is to work with a prisoner when they first arrive,” said Dawn. “It can be three years before they are assigned an appellate counsel and a lot can happen in that time. As a student, I was able to help the California Appellate Project attorneys to gather documents and interview the client to gather evidence for their appeal.”
At the Homeless Advocacy Project, Dawn spent several months assisting the group with the case of an indigent client who was facing eviction.
Working with the California Appellate Project and the Homeless Advocacy Project was a good fit for Dawn.
“It was a very fulfilling part of my law school experience to assist the attorneys at both these groups who provide legal services to people in crisis who otherwise wouldn’t have access to legal help.”
We are sure that Dawn will work diligently on behalf of asbestos victims and are proud to add her to our roster of asbestos attorneys at Kazan Law.