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December 16, 2008

Lisa Snead, ’09, awarded Skadden Fellowship

Photo of Lisa Snead
Lisa Snead, ’09

Third-year Law School student Lisa Snead has been awarded a 2009 Skadden Fellowship. The Fellowships, sponsored by New York-based law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, are awarded yearly to between twenty and thirty-five students nationwide and provide a two-year stipend for graduating law students to practice public-interest law.

Snead will use her fellowship to work at Advocacy, Inc., an Austin-based nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting and advancing the rights of people with disabilities in Texas. She will concentrate on family law, representing people with disabilities who have been the victims of domestic violence and advocating for them in custody and child-support cases.

Snead has participated in the Domestic Violence Clinic at the Law School, working with and studying under Professor Sarah Buel, the codirector of the Clinic and an expert in representing battered women, abused children, and juveniles within the legal system. Snead said the opportunity to study with Professor Buel was a main reason she decided to earn her degree at UT Law and she hopes to continue advocating for victims of domestic violence at Advocacy, Inc., and throughout her career.

“People with disabilities are often taken advantage of and are often the victims of domestic abuse, which can exacerbate their disabilities,” Snead said. “We see so many survivors of domestic abuse not getting what they deserve. I wanted to continue working with domestic violence survivors and was glad to find out I could do so at Advocacy.” Snead has already worked as an intern at Advocacy, Inc., with another Law School graduate and Skadden Fellow, Ian Spechler, ’07.

The Skadden Fellowship Foundation was established in 1988 to fund graduating law students who wish to devote their professional lives to providing legal services to the poor and working poor, the elderly, the homeless and the disabled, as well as those deprived of their civil or human rights. Fellows create their own projects at public interest organizations before they apply.

Fellowships are awarded for one year, with the expectation of renewal for a second year. Skadden provides each Fellow with a salary and pays all fringe benefits to which an employee of the sponsoring organization would be entitled. For those Fellows not covered by a law school loan-repayment plan, the firm will pay a Fellow’s law school debt service for the tuition part of the loan for the duration of the fellowship.

Related links:

Advocacy Inc

Skadden Fellowship Foundation

Ian Spechler, ’07, Awarded Skadden Fellowship to Advocate Legal Rights of Children with Disabilities

UT Law Career Services Office


Kirston Fortune, UT Law Communications Office, (512) 471-7330, or