Heather L. Poole
Class of ‘97,
Class of ‘97,
Heather L. Poole, P.C.
Since Heather Poole graduated with a double major in philosophy and history in 1997, she continued her ambitious quest for knowledge. In 2000, she earned a juris doctorate from New York Law School, where she participated in internships that helped shape her professional career. Poole was a law clerk for LAMBDA Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc., Planned Parenthood Federation of America's litigation department, and New York State Supreme Court Justice, Lorraine Miller. She co-authored a gender discrimination compliance brief as a law clerk for Sabel & Sabel, a plaintiffs civil rights firm in Montgomery, Alabama, the largest settled gender discrimination case in Montgomery 's history. She also honed her civil liberties knowledge as a research assistant to Nadine Strossen, the ACLU national president.
Poole points to her years in student activism and her experience as a victim of sexual harassment in the workplace, which have sparked her devotion to making a difference. “I have learned there is much injustice and little empathy left in this world," she says. "The world will not change unless each of us does something every day to bring about that change," says Poole, who was instrumental in aiding staff and students in the start-up of Cal Poly Pomona 's first National Organization for Women chapter.
Immediately after receiving her law degree, Poole joined Bernard P. Wolsdorf, Professional Law Corporation, as an associate. By 2001, she established her own private practice in family-based immigration, which focuses on aiding the disenfranchised and politically marginalized. The practice also specializes in assisting survivors of assault and intimate violence in obtaining green cards and U.S. citizenship without their abuser's knowledge or consent under the federal Violence Against Women Act. This path, though difficult, has resulted in Poole being singled out as a dynamic force to be reckoned with. She was designated a 2005 Super Lawyer: Rising Star by Law & Politics Magazine and Los Angeles Magazine.
"Immigrants have the least amount of legal protections and rights of all populations in the U.S.," says Poole. "They can be summarily removed without due process, be denied access to counsel, and be separated from loved ones because they have the least power to come forward and stand up."
Her list of community service activities includes volunteer efforts on behalf of the Los Angeles County Bar Association's Barristers' Domestic Violence Project; El Monte Rosemead Adult School; Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women Community Advisory Board Member; and the National Network on Behalf of Battered Immigrant Women. At Cal Poly Pomona, Poole has served as assistant and consultant for the STOP Violence Grant Office, program advisor/sponsor of "The Vagina Monologues," and participates in the Professor for a Day program.