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We are thrilled to announce Catherine Cone as our new Legal Director overseeing the LAJC Housing team’s work defending tenant’s rights, fighting mass evictions, and dismantling legal and other barriers to safe and affordable housing. This determined team of community organizers and attorneys previously successfully pushed for an eviction moratorium at public housing in Richmond, the ending of illegal rent fees in Northern Virginia, and the ending of use of exclusionary and racist single-family zoning in Charlottesville, along with providing individual representation for low-income tenants and pursuing statewide policy changes.

Catherine is also guiding our Consumer & Medical Debt advocacy, continuing our efforts to protect consumers targeted by predatory merchants and lenders though both individual representation and systemic advocacy such as when we helped to significantly change UVA Health System’s harmful collection practices.

About Catherine:

Catherine Cone is a social justice and civil rights attorney who started her career in public interest even before entering law school. She worked at various nonprofits in Washington, D.C. and New York City and eventually centered on the legal sector as her entry to racial justice work. After graduating from law school, she clerked for the Honorable Anna Blackburne-Rigsby, current Chief Judge of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals (DCCA), who served as an Associate Judge for the DCCA at the time, where she handled administrative, civil, criminal, and ethics issues that came before the court. 

She then spent nearly nine years at the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs supervising a team of attorneys, legal support staff, and an advocate, as well as managing an active docket of individual and class action fair housing cases brought in federal and state courts. She later expanded her subject matter expertise to cover consumer protection and affirmative housing conditions issues. In her work, Catherine constantly centered client communities of color, and as a result of her efforts and those of other staff, the Committee adopted a movement lawyering framework through which to advance its racial justice mission. She also ensured that the organization mirrored its commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging internally as much as in its work.  

Catherine obtained her B.A. from Duke University and J.D. from American University’s Washington College of Law. While in law school, Catherine founded ADVANCE, a mentoring program for first-generation law students. 

Catherine also gave over a decade of service to the Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia and is looking for a comparable Virginia bar association or organization of interest to join. She resides in Falls Church with her dog and cat.

Please join us in welcoming Catherine to the Legal Aid Justice Center!

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