Center on Latino and Latina Rights and Equality
Director, Fellows & Staff
Professor of Law and Director of CLORE
Lawyer/Librarian and Associate Professor
Born in Bronx, New York of Puerto Rican parents, Magdalena "Maggie" Ruperto is is an aspiring artist who enjoys reading and writing poetry. She has been married for 26 years and has two daughters, aged 23 and 25. Maggie has been working as a CUNY College office assistant for nine years. Eight of those were spent at the Queens College Bursar's Office in conjunction with multiple offices such as Financial Aid, Registrar, several scholarship offices, Title IV, Central Office, and others. Maggie notes that, in part because she herself has faced obstacles in her own life, she hopes to help those who may turn to CLORE for assistance. "It would be very gratifying if I were able to aid just one person in making their goals more attainable," she said.
Cristian A. Farias
Cristian A. Farias is a second-year student at the City University of New York School of Law, where he also serves as a staff member of law review. Prior to law school, Mr. Farias worked as a freelance writer and reporter, publishing upwards of 500 articles, features and reviews appearing both in nationwide and niche publications.
A native from Chile, Mr. Farias arrived in the United States at 16 and had to repeat his sophomore year of high school to take English as a second language. He went on to obtain a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Media Studies, double-majoring in Spanish Translation and Interpretation. He graduated magna cum laude from Rutgers University.
After nearly six years of writing and reporting, Mr. Farias sought a career change and took a civil-service examination for aspiring probation officers. A top-ranked candidate, he was sworn in as an officer of the courts and appointed to the Criminal and Probation Divisions of the New Jersey Judiciary. Mr. Farias’ work supervising and counseling felony offenders — most of them Spanish-speaking probationers grossly underserved by the criminal justice system — fueled his desire to study law.
Over the summer, Mr. Farias worked as a legal intern at the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, Office of Pro Se Litigation, where he assisted in drafting orders, memoranda and opinions for district and magistrate judges involving areas such as prisoner’s rights, habeas corpus, immigration and Section 1983. Presently, Mr. Farias also volunteers as a pro bono translator for the Columbia Human Rights Law Review's Spanish Jailhouse Lawyer's Manual project.
Mr. Farias counts his marriage to Stephanie his greatest life accomplishment.
Maria Dyson, is a third year law student at CUNY School of Law. She attended St. John's University where she received her Bachelor of Science in Physics. At St. John's, she participated in a number of organizations dedicated to community service. After she graduated, she participated in the Vincentian Lay Missionary program which organized summer camps for children in slum communities in Nairobi Kenya.
Since law school, she has been actively involved in a variety of causes both on and off campus. In her first year, with the Oaxaca Delegation, Maria travelled to Oaxaca Mexico, where she provided legal services to a collective that assisted a man seeking justice for civil and human rights violations perpetrated by the government.
As a second year law student, Maria served as the President of the CUNY Black Law Student Association. That year, BLSA was the most active organization on campus, organizing panels on a variety of issues, including New York's foster care system, the criminal justice system, racial profiling, police misconduct, and the school to prison pipeline. BLSA also engaged in a vigorous fund raising campaign and provided over $9,000.00 in fellowships. That year, Maria also joined Moot Court and participated in the New York University Immigration Law Competition. Maria is the President of CUNY Law School's Moot Court organization and will be representing CUNY at the New York Bar Association's national moot court competition in the fall of 2012.
After law school, Maria hopes to be a trial lawyer and practice in the field of Civil Rights litigation and § 1983 claims. She also hopes to engage in impact litigation and policy work to combat the discriminatory effects of the criminal justice system, especially issues relating to the NYPD's "Stop & Frisk" policy.