Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 15

FEATURE

BLAZING TRAILS
IN ENVIRONMENTAL ACTIVISM

Monica Medina
By Richard Blaustein
Out of the MeToo movement, Graves cofounded the TIME'S UP Legal
Defense Fund. The program connects individuals who have experienced
workplace harassment and related retaliation with attorneys and media
support; it also helps fund legal fees and other costs. With nothing like it
in existence, the founders saw the fund as a cohesive way to ensure individuals across industries were being heard and helped, Graves says. By
the end of 2019, people from more than 60 different sectors had reached
out to the fund for assistance.
From Graves's perspective, the stories driving the movement won't cease
until there's a change in leadership and a shift in laws and policies. "All
of those who are influencing our culture and our conversations have to
communicate that it matters. This has been a movement led by survivors.
When we see them differently, that will shape how we treat this issue,"
she says.
Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil
and Human Rights, has worked alongside Graves on many issues. She
describes Graves as a visionary who is unafraid of the hard conversations.

''

W

hen Monica Medina left her hometown of
Atlanta in 1979 to attend Georgetown University
on an ROTC scholarship, it had barely been a
decade (and two years in Washington, D.C.) since
ROTC programs in colleges and universities across the
country started accepting women. The atmosphere
wasn't easy for those who were among the first, Medina
says, but that did not deter her from excelling - Medina
and another female cadet graduated at the top of their
class. Receiving a deferment to attend Columbia Law
School, Medina went on to serve four years in the Army's
Office of the General Counsel as captain.

This has been a movement led by survivors.
When we see them differently, that will shape
how we treat this issue.
FATIMA GOSS GRAVES
National Women's Law Center

"Her leadership and power are important in this moment. For a long time
there was a perception that this was a white woman's movement. So, for
her to be at the helm is a powerful statement on the next generation of
leadership," says Gupta.
Graves and the NWLC are influencing that next generation, intentionally
reaching out to and creating a path for people who are passionate about
their issues. This past fall, the NWLC supported a group of African
American girls who claimed the District's school dress code was biased
against them, resulting in a disproportionate number of violations and
suspensions. As a result, starting in the 2020-2021 school year, public
schools in the District will be prohibited from issuing out-of-school
suspensions for dress code violations. Graves calls it an example of
creating a platform for activism to drive change in the community.
"I tell my staff to hold to the wins, whether they are small or large. They
get us through," Graves says. "We are an important part of the arc
bending toward something better for all of us."
Stacy Julien is a writer based in Washington, D.C.

MARCH/APRIL 2020

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WASHINGTON LAWYER

15



Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020

Digital Extras
Your Voice
From Our President
Practice Management
Calendar Of Events
Women of Impact feature
The Race to End Roe feature
Solar Power Access Feature
Taking the Stand
On Further Review
Global & Domestic Outlook
Member Spotlight – Joesphine Wang
Member Spotlight - Fatemah Albader
Worth Reading
Attorney Briefs
Disciplinary Summaries
Pro Bono Effect
Portraits of Suffrage's Overlooked Heroes
Community & Connections
Last Word
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Cover1
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Cover2
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 1
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 2
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 3
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Digital Extras
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Your Voice
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - From Our President
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Practice Management
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Calendar Of Events
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 9
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Women of Impact feature
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 11
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 12
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 13
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 14
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 15
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 16
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 17
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 18
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 19
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - The Race to End Roe feature
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 21
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 22
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 23
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 24
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 25
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Solar Power Access Feature
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 27
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Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 31
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 32
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 33
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 34
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Taking the Stand
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - On Further Review
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 37
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Global & Domestic Outlook
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 39
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Member Spotlight – Joesphine Wang
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 41
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Member Spotlight - Fatemah Albader
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Worth Reading
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 44
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Attorney Briefs
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Disciplinary Summaries
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 47
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Pro Bono Effect
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 49
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Portraits of Suffrage's Overlooked Heroes
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 51
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 52
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 53
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Community & Connections
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - 55
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Last Word
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Cover3
Washington Lawyer - March/April 2020 - Cover4
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