2021 Bay Area Minority Law Student Scholarship Recipients Announced
By Samantha Akwei
The Justice & Diversity Center (JDC) of the Bar Association of San Francisco (BASF) is proud to announce the 2021 recipients of its Bay Area Minority Law Student Scholarships. Thanks to the generosity of donors, three scholarships will be awarded to minority students attending Bay Area law schools this fall.
Scholarship donors include: Aaron Kaufman, Peter Rukin, Sharon Djemal, Jim Finberg Melanie Finberg, Jason Marsili, Leonard Carder LLP, Anne Schmitz, SF-Marin Lawyer Referral and Information Service (LRIS), and the Arthur and Charlotte Zitrin Foundation.
The 2021 scholarship recipients are Erika Basurto, UC Berkeley Law, Alyosha Maggin, UC Hastings College of the Law, and Bailey Bryant, UC Berkeley Law.
Erika Basurto is motivated to promote equal access to justice after witnessing the various barriers to justice faced by her community.
As a volunteer at Centro Legal De La Raza, where Basurto interpreted for Spanish-speaking immigrants facing wage theft, she saw how income, language, and citizenship status limit access to justice. The disproportionate impact of these barriers on her community motivated her to provide legal assistance to communities of color.
As a paralegal at various nonprofits, she assisted in preventing evictions, obtaining asylum, and keeping families together. Along with helping people navigate the legal system, she has also worked toward changes in law and policy. At the ACLU, she worked on class action lawsuits in the service of broader bail and indigent defense reform.
As a first-generation student of color, she will obtain a legal education to continue challenging the many barriers to justice for low-income communities and communities of color.
As a child of an immigrant family and lifelong resident of San Francisco, Alyosha Maggin has been a civic advocate serving the Latinx and Indigenous communities of the Bay Area.
Maggin has used his extensive background in interpreting and music to work toward social justice in collaboration with various professionals who share a similar vision for parity across ethnicities, gender identities, class structures, and ability.
His passion is to work with people from low-income and diverse backgrounds to achieve equity. Focused on public-interest law and immigration, he intends to solidify skills in legal advocacy, as well as acquire the knowledge needed to render adept and compassionate lawyering to underserved communities and communities of color.
Originally from Los Angeles, Bailey Bryant has long had a passion for serving others and justice.
Bryant received her undergraduate degrees from Seattle University in Political Science and Public Affairs. Most recently, she worked for King County in the Executive’s Office facilitating county-wide legislation between executive departments and the county council.
She first began her career at King County through an internship with the Juvenile Division of the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. Her work there inspired her to pursue a legal career in public service with the hopes of one day becoming a judge.
Scholarships were awarded based on financial need, scholastics, involvement in public service and barriers faced in life. Each recipient will receive a $10,000 scholarship for the 2021-2022 academic year, which may be renewable for an additional one to two years. Donors of former and continuing scholarships include Morrison & Foerster, AT&T, Coblentz, Patch, Duffy & Bass, PG&E, Keker, Van Nest & Peters, and many others.
Since its inception in 1998, the Bay Area Minority Law Student Scholarship program has awarded more than $2 million in support to 100 students. The program was established to reaffirm a commitment to diversity in legal education and the legal profession.
Samantha Akwei is the Diversity and Pipeline Programs Director at the Justice and Diversity Center (JDC). She oversees JDC’s educational pipeline programs, including the School-to-College program, Law Academy, and the Bay Area Minority Law Student Scholarship program.
The Bay Area Minority Law Student Scholarship Program is an expression of our commitment to diversity in legal education and the legal profession. To learn more, contact Samantha Akwei at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit here.