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Eliza Patten

Eliza Patten

Legal Services For Children Inc
Dependency Project Director & Senior Staff Attorney
San Francisco, CA, USA

Eliza has built her legal career around a commitment to working with children and parents involved in the child welfare system.  After graduating from law school at NYU in 2001, Eliza worked at Community Legal Aid Society, Inc. in Wilmington, Delaware, where she implemented a Skadden Fellowship project that focused on improving the delivery of child welfare services to children in foster care through representation of parents in dependency proceedings, community education and outreach to parents and service providers, and public policy work at the state level.   Eliza joined Legal Services for Children in 2007 and is currently the Dependency Project Director.  In addition to representing youth in San Francisco’s dependency courts, Eliza has served as the Director of the Young Women’s Empowerment Project at LSC, focused on improving gender-responsive client work, including the development of a peer support group.  Eliza led LSC in looking more systematically at the effects of trauma across all client populations, developing practice guidelines for trauma-informed lawyering for youth that have been nationally disseminated as part of the ABA’s Polyvictimization and Trauma Consortium.  Most recently, Eliza is leading a project to explore the role of counsel for nonminor dependents with significant mental illness or developmental delay that may affect decision-making and to develop recommendations for transition planning for foster youth with disabilities.

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