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Emily Kenyon, 2020-2022 Poverty Law Fellow

Emily Kenyon, 2020-2022 Vermont Poverty Law Fellow

Vermont Bar Foundation’s Access to Justice Campaign and Vermont Legal Aid Welcome 2020 Poverty Law Fellow

The Vermont Bar Foundation’s Access to Justice Campaign has selected Emily Kenyon as the 2020 Poverty Law Fellow from a large pool of young lawyers from across the country. The two-year Poverty Law Fellowship is made possible by generous donations from Vermont lawyers and law firms to the Vermont Bar Foundation Access to Justice Campaign. Fellowship projects are designed to address serious unmet legal needs of Vermont’s low-income community.

“I am honored to serve with Fritz Langrock as Co-Chair of the Access to Justice Campaign”, said Campaign Co-Chair Bonnie Badgewick. “We are appreciative of our fellow Vermonters and other practitioners and members of the bench for their support. Our fellows have a great tradition of engaging and serving the work of the bar in areas that need it most, they do the hard work that we would like to but simply cannot do. Thank you, Emily for joining the remarkable team.”

The Vermont Poverty Law Fellowship was launched in 2008 and is funded by generous contributions from more than 300 law firms, individual attorneys, corporations and organizations. The Fellowship provides two years of support to exceptional young attorneys who work to increase legal access for low-income Vermonters.

Emily will be working with Vermont Legal Aid focusing on legal problems encountered by low-wage workers. The current pandemic has highlighted the precariousness of life as a low-wage worker in Vermont. Many low-wage workers lost their jobs due to the pandemic and are struggling with the unemployment insurance system. Others have questions about returning to work safely and workers’ rights and responsibilities. Emily will also work with members of the private bar practicing employment law to identify employment discrimination and other cases appropriate for referral, while filling the gap representing low-wage workers who are not able to secure representation.

Prior to the Fellowship, Emily clerked for the Honorable Gerard E. Lynch on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and the Honorable Analisa Torres on the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Before clerking, Emily was the Kirkland & Ellis Public Service Fellow at the Pace-NRDC Food Law Initiative where she provided direct legal services and used policy tools to advocate for a more equitable, accessible, and sustainable food system.

Emily received her law degree magna cum laude in 2017 from New York University School of Law, where she was recognized as a Butler Scholar, a Pomeroy Scholar, and inducted into the Order of the Coif. During law school Emily worked with multiple public interest organizations including the Sylvia Rivera Law Project, Sanctuary for Families, Earthjustice, and the Natural Resources Defense Council. Emily also served as an Executive Editor on the New York University Law Review. She was awarded the Maurice Goodman Memorial Prize for outstanding scholarship and character, the Seymour Goldstein Prize, and the Environmental Law Prize.

Before law school, Emily lived and worked in California. She also spent time in Vermont working on her family’s farm. She received her B.S. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Cornell University. Emily grew up in Monkton and is humbled by the opportunity to return to Vermont and to serve as a Poverty Law Fellow working to increase legal access for low-income Vermonters.

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