BY: Communications | DATE: Nov 18, 2021

Eight 2021 alums awarded a LaunchPad for Justice Fellowship 

Meet the 2021-2022 LaunchPad for Justice Fellows. Their collective bios tell our CUNY Law story and give us a glimpse of where we are going. And it’s inspiring!

The LaunchPad for Justice program provides recent CUNY School of Law graduates a rich entrée into the role of a practicing lawyer. Fellows receive excellent training, free CLE credits, quality supervision, and invaluable experience, while they serve New Yorkers with unmet legal needs. Fellows are also supported with stipends for their participation in the program.

The CLRN LaunchPad program is supported by a grant from the New York State Unified Court System’s Division of Professional and Court Services, and support from CLRN funding. CUNY Law is part of a four-school consortium working, supporting, and promoting pro bono activity and charged with service in the Second Judicial Department. The program has enjoyed a close working relationship with personnel from the Office of Justice Initiatives led by alumna Judge Edwina G. Richardson Mendelson, Deputy Chief Administrative Judge for Justice Initiatives, and a member of CUNY Law’s Class of 1988.

In the 2020 to 2021 grant year, even with the courts largely closed due to the pandemic, the LaunchPad program assisted nearly 600 low-income New Yorkers with partial representation and legal information in many areas, including housing, consumer debt, benefits, and uncontested divorces.

For the last several years, the LaunchPad program has partnered with two programs under the Center for Court Innovation, Legal Hand to provide legal advice in the areas of consumer debt, family law, housing, and benefits, and the Red Hook Community Justice Center to assist tenants with Housing Part Actions and non-payment cases. All programs are working to be responsive to legal challenges arising from the pandemic, including particular legal needs and the challenges of providing remote services.

For more information about the LaunchPad for Justice program, take a look at our video, and visit our site. 

Meet the Class of 2021 LaunchPad for Justice Fellows!

Natasia DaSilva ’21
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Before law school, Natasia DaSilva worked as a legal assistant in personal injury, real estate, and insurance defense.

During law school, she primarily focused on asylum work and participated in CUNY Law’s Mediation Clinic. Natasia is interested in pursuing immigration or housing law in the future.

Email | LinkedIn

Maya Demianczuk ’21
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Maya Demianczuk believes the cornerstone to legal reform is expanded legal representation to underserved communities and has spent her law school career working in the areas of corporate accountability and immigration justice.

Maya worked in the Creating Law Enforcement and Responsibility Legal Clinic this last year with individuals unjustly targeted by the U.S. national security apparatus.

In 2020, Maya was awarded the Sorensen Fellowship for her commitment to social justice. Prior to law school, she worked as an archivist in Ukraine as part of a transitional justice initiative. Maya is excited to work with LaunchPad to Justice in its efforts to broaden legal representation.

Daniel McEnroe ’21
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Daniel McEnroe is an enthusiastic believer in social justice. He attended CUNY Law in the hopes of gaining the skills to be able to protect the rights of marginalized people.

He is interested in pursuing housing or civil rights law in the future.




Gregory Minnig ’21
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Prior to law school, Gregory Minnig was a menswear designer who, among other things, designed David Bowie’s final tour wardrobe which now lives in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Greg is interested in the areas of housing law, criminal defense, and cannabis law through the lens of restorative justice.

He is a graduate of NYU’s Gallatin School and lives in Bushwick, Brooklyn with his wife and their four dogs.

Email | Twitter

Dalilah Negrete ’21

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Dalilah Negrete is committed to the values of service and equality. She is passionate about serving the immigrant community, and has spent a majority of her law school experience focused on immigration law.

Through a blend of both direct services experience and policy advocacy, Dalilah has learned community-centered lawyering practices and seeks to continue her development as a holistic, client-centered lawyer.

Through the LaunchPad Fellowship, Dalilah endeavors to foster her growth as an effective and compassionate public interest lawyer, gaining valuable experience through new areas of the law.


Alexandra Reese ’21
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Alexandra Reese believes in prison abolition and legal empowerment of under-resourced communities.

As a law student, she participated in the Health Justice Clinical program, where she worked with New York Lawyers for the Public Interest to advocate for individuals in immigration detention receiving inadequate medical treatment.

She also interned with the Bernstein Institute’s Jailhouse Lawyering Initiative, working with formerly incarcerated jailhouse lawyers building legal empowerment curriculum for currently incarcerated individuals. As a LaunchPad Fellow, Alex looks forward to further developing her legal skills within the communities CUNY Law helps serve.

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Dannelly Rodriguez ’21
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Dannelly Rodriguez is a community organizer focused on building class power and changing the law from a movement lawyer approach.

As a law student, he organized public housing tenants to file lawsuits against the New York City Housing Authority for failure to make repairs. He has also provided legal support to public housing tenants who have utilized rent striking as a tool to get repairs done and to fight for policies that preserve public housing within New York City.

As part of the Defenders Clinic at CUNY Law, he helped parole a client who was incarcerated for 20 years. His goals as an attorney are to challenge and change the systems of racism and classism that exist throughout the law by filing class-action/civil-rights lawsuits via a movement-lawyering strategy, specifically against the police and landlords.

Email | Instagram | Twitter

Ariana Salas ’21

Ariana Salas’ legal experience is in immigration law.

She would like to further her legal knowledge to use in specific areas that would best support and empower those most vulnerable in our communities.

Ariana is interested in working with people whose prior criminal convictions have been impacted both outside and within immigration law.

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