About Us

The Law School established the Feerick Center in September 2006 as a lasting legacy of the school's Centennial Celebration. The Center’s establishment reflects the Law School’s long tradition of and commitment to legal education in the service of others and builds on Professor John D. Feerick’s contributions as Dean of the Law School (1982-2002) and currently as the Sidney C. Norris Professor of Law.

Advisory Board

Fern Schair serves as the chair of the Center’s advisory board.  The advisory board helps guide program development at the Center.  Advisory board members include the following individuals:

  • Honorable Denny Chin – United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

  • Kevin J. Curnin, Esq. – Partner and Director of Public Service Project, Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP

  • James F. Gill, Esq. – Partner, Bryan Cave LLP

  • Bruce A. Green (Ex Officio) – Louis Stein Professor of Law, Fordham University School of Law; Director, Louis Stein Center for Law and Ethics, Fordham University School of Law

  • Peggy A. Healy, Esq. – Senior Vice President, Covenant House

  • Constantine N. Katsoris, Wilkinson Professor of Law, Fordham University School of Law

  • Mary Ellen Kris, Esq. – Consultant, United Methodist General Board of Global Ministries

  • Daniel Kronenfeld – Senior Fellow, Fund for the City of New York; former Director, Henry Street Settlement

  • Peter J. Madonia – Chief Operating Officer, The Rockefeller Foundation

  • Maura Kathleen Monaghan – Partner, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP

  • Jacqueline Nolan-Haley (Ex Officio) – Professor of Law, Fordham University School of Law; Director, Fordham ADR & Conflict Resolution Program

  • Rev. Joseph A. O’Hare, S.J. – President Emeritus, Fordham University

  • Ana L. Oliveira – President & CEO, The New York Women’s Foundation

  • Carlos G. Ortiz, Esq. – General Counsel, Goya Foods, Inc.

  • Marisa M. Peterson, Esq. – former General Counsel, American Arbitration Association; Adjunct Professor, Fordham University School of Law

  • Timothy G. Reynolds – Partner, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP

  • Robert C. Sheehan, Esq. - Pro Bono Partner, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom

  • Herbert Sturz – Trustee, The Open Society Institute; Founding Chairman, The After-School Corp.

  • Honorable George Bundy Smith –Arbitrator, Mediator and Special Master for Disputes, Neutrals Panel, JAMS; former Associate Judge, New York State Court of Appeals

  • Irene Sullivan - Retired Partner, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP 

  • A. William Urquhart – Partner, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP

  • Georgene Vairo – Professor of Law and William M. Raines Fellow, Loyola Law School; former Associate Dean, Fordham University School of Law


John D. Feerick

John D. Feerick, the Founder and Senior Counsel of the Feerick Center for Social Justice, was the Dean of Fordham Law School from 1982-2002. He has held the Sidney C. Norris Chair of Law in Public Service since 2004 and was the Leonard F. Manning Professor of Law from 2002-2004. John began his career at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom; he spent 21 years (1961-1982) there, developing and heading up their labor department.

John has been a dedicated public servant throughout his career. Most recently, he has served as a member of the three-person Special Master Panel in the McCain homeless family rights litigation (2003-2005); was appointed to a three-member Referee Panel in Campaign for Fiscal Equity v. State of New York (concerning education equity; 2003); and was the Chair of the Commission to Promote Public Confidence in Judicial Elections (2003). From April 2007 to February 2009, John served as Chair of the New York State Commission on Public Integrity. He is the co-chair of Chief Judge Advisory Council in the Attorney Emeritus Program. Previously, John was the President of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York (1992-1994); Chair of the New York State Commission on Government Integrity (1987-1990); and President of the Citizens Union Foundation (1987-1999).

Elizabeth B. Cooper

Elizabeth B. Cooper, the Faculty Director of the Feerick Center, joined the Fordham faculty in 1995. Liz teaches primarily in the Law School's clinical program (the Litigation Skills clinic, the Civil Rights Clinic, the Center’s Social Justice Clinic, and currently, the Urban Policy Clinic); she also has taught courses in Fundamental Lawyering Skills, Institutional Reform Through the Courts (with Professor Feerick), and AIDS and the Law. Her scholarship has focused on issues of autonomy, particularly in the context of bioethics, HIV/AIDS, Marriage rights, Equality and the pedagogy of clinical teaching.

Before coming to Fordham, Liz taught at Brooklyn Law School for one year and at Rutgers-Newark Law School as an adjunct law professor. She was a Gibbons Fellow in Public Interest and Constitutional Law at the Newark, NJ law firm of Gibbons, Del Deo, Dolan, Griffinger & Vecchione (1992-1994) and was a Skadden Fellow/Staff Counsel at the ACLU AIDS Project (1990-1992). Following graduation from New York University School of Law (1988), where she was a Root-Tilden Scholar, she clerked for the Hon. Anne E. Thompson, Senior Judge, U.S. District Court of New Jersey. She is a 1983 magna cum laude graduate of the University of Pennsylvania.



Bree Bernwanger
Bree Bernwanger directs the Feerick Center’s New York Unaccompanied Immigrant Children and Immigrant Families Project. Bree joined the Feerick Center from a clinical fellowship at Albany Law School, where she taught and supervised students representing immigrant children and survivors of violence in family court and before immigration authorities. She also practiced as a litigation associate in the New York office of Sidley Austin LLP, where her pro bono matters included family court and death penalty work. Immediately following law school, she contributed to litigation on behalf of detainees at Bagram Air Base and worked on impact litigation and advocacy at the New York Civil Liberties Union.

Bree holds a J.D. from Georgetown Law and a B.A., with honors, from the University of Texas at Austin.

Dora Galacatos

Dora Galacatos, the Executive Director to the Feerick Center, is a Fordham Law alumna (1996), with experience working in city government, the not-for-profit sector, and legal services for low-income individuals. Prior to coming to Law School, Dora worked for the New York City Department of Juvenile Justice and the New York City for Mayor's Office of Drug Abuse Policy from 1989 to 1993, where she focused on program development, program evaluation, and policy analysis. As part of a Skadden Fellowship (1997-98), Dora helped establish a family day care network at Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation, in Washington Heights, Manhattan.

Dora had served as Staff Director to the New York City Family Homelessness Special Master Panel, working alongside John Feerick. Dora also served as a law clerk to the late-Honorable Milton Pollack (1996-97) and, more recently, to the Honorable Paul A. Crotty (2005-2006), both District Judges in the Southern District of New York. Dora is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, where she received her Bachelor of Arts in History (1987), and the New School for Social Research, where she was a Kaplan M. Fellow and received a Master of Science in Urban Policy (1993).

In 2009 Dora was honored by The New York County Lawyer's Association with their Public Service Award. In 2011, Manhattan Legal Services awarded her its Medal of Honor. In 2013, MFY Legal Services, Inc. recognized Dora with its Partner in Justice Award. Dora is a former chair of the New York City Bar Civil Court Committee.

Email: galacatos@fordham.edu Tel. 212-636-7747.

Robert J. Reilly

Robert J. Reilly, the Assistant Dean for the Feerick Center, is responsible for many of the administrative functions of the Center including finance, planning, development, personnel and administration. He is a primary contact for the Board of Advisors for the Center and is involved in several programmatic areas including the Fordham University Consortium on Social Justice, the H.E.L.P. program providing legal advice to homeless individuals, the Attorney Emeritus Program, our public lecture series, and the CLARO program. He is a graduate of Fordham Law and he returned to the School as Assistant Dean in 1982, after seven years of corporate legal practice, to assist in the building of a strong alumni and development program for the School. He served for several years as the Dean of Students at the Law School, and later as the Assistant Dean for the Offices of External Relations, Communications, Alumni Affairs, and the Office of Public Programming. He has served on the New York State Office of Court Administration's Board of Continuing Legal Education and is involved with several charitable organizations in the New York area. In 2010, he received the annual Charles Carroll Award from the Guild of Catholic Lawyers of the Archdiocese of New York as a lawyer "who has earned distinction in the profession or public service by exemplifying integrity and the highest standards of professional conduct in the promotion and advancement of justice".

Email: rreilly@law.fordham.edu Tel. 212-636-6807.

Fern Schair

Fern Schair has been Chairperson of the Feerick Center Advisory Board since its inception. Her professional positions include: Senior Vice President of the American Arbitration Association, Chief Administrative Officer of the New York City Bar Association, Program Development Officer for Civil Justice Programs at the Open Society Institute (Soros Foundation), and Director of Civil Justice Programs at the Fund for the City of New York. Her current civic positions include member of the Board, Immediate Past President, and Co-Founder of the Children’s Law Center; former Chair and current Board member of the Fund for Modern Courts; Vice-Chair of the Judicial Committee on Women in the Courts (NY); Co-Chair of the Advisory Committee on Court Interpreters; former Board Chair and current Emeritus Board member of Legal Services-NYC; Co-Chair of the Chief Judge’s Advisory Council on the Attorney Emeritus Program; Co-Chair of the Committee on Non-lawyers and the Justice Gap; and member of the Committee on Character and Fitness for the First Judicial Department. Ms. Schair attended Cornell University and graduated from St John’s School of Law.

Email: schair@law.fordham.edu Tel. 212-636-7746.

Derek Hackett

Derek Hackett, the Administrative Assistant to John D. Feerick and an Administrative Assistant to the Feerick Center.

Tel. 212-636-6873

Wilma Tamayo-Abreu

Wilma Tamayo-Abreu, the Administrative and Programmatic Assistant for the Feerick Center.

Email: wtamayoabreu@law.fordham.edu Tel. 212-636-7671.





2014 - 2015

Michelle Lee, Class of 2014


Anna Stallmann, Class of 2013


Deena Schwartz, Class of 2012
Andrea Vazquez, Class of 2012


Marcie Kobak, Class of 2011
Anitoshia Johnson, Class of 2011
Damian Treffs, Class of 2011


Tamara Alexander, Class of 2010
Joe Costello, Class of 2010
Gerrald Ellis, Class of 2010
Paolo Meireles, Class of 2010
Lynda Tooker, Class of 2010
Scott Wagner, Class of 2010


Shireen Ahmed, Class of 2009
Mary Cox, Class of 2009
David Friedman, Class of 2009
Brandon Gershowitz Class of 2009
Yelena Kozlova, Class of 2009
Kathryn Newman, Class of 2009


Suzana Carlos, Class of 2008
Michael Higgins, Class of 2008
Emilio Justiniano, Class of 2008
Jessica Selman, Class of 2008


Nyssa Fajardo, Class of 2007
Gerard Haskins, Class of 2007
William Lim, Class of 2007
Erynne Novetsky, Class of 2007
Elisabeth Prael, Class of 2007
Leigh Tuccio, Class of 2007


Jonathan Benovitz, Class of 2006
Adonaid Casado, Class of 2006
Stephen Cincotta, Class of 2006
Carrie Loewenthal, Class of 2006



AmeriCorps Members

Christine Brathwaite

Christine Brathwaite is an AmeriCorps VISTA member at the Feerick Center, where she works as a coordinator for the Educational Component of the Legal, Economic, and Educational Advancement Project (LEEAP). Christine grew up in Long Island, New York and graduated from Amherst College in May of 2015 with a B.A. in English. After learning more about contemporary, domestic human rights abuses, as well as international crimes against humanity, Christine made the decision to apply to law school for the fall of 2016 and study human rights. In the meantime, she is excited to work on making NYC’s current public high school application process more equitable by developing advising programs that utilize volunteers to assist low-income middle school students with their applications.

 Yolanda Garcia

Garcia is an AmeriCorps VISTA member at the Feerick Center, where she currently works with the consumer debt protection and veteran assistance portions of LEEAP (Legal Economic and Education Advancement Project). She graduated from University of Pittsburgh, where she received a B.S. in Psychology and a minor in Legal Studies. She also recently graduated from the University of Maine School of Law, where she received her Juris Doctorate with Pro Bono distinction. She is excited to pursue her interest in social justice issues through this AmeriCorps position.

Donita Krasniqi

Donita Krasniqi was born in Kosovo and moved to the United States one year ago. She is a New York City Civic Corps and is a currently working on the Attorney Emeritus Program. She graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology where she received a B.S on Applied Arts and Science, majoring in Public Policy with a minor in International Relations.


New York Women's Bar Association Foundation Fellows

Contact Us

Feerick Center for Social Justice of Fordham School of Law
150 West 62nd Street, 7 Floor, New York, NY 10023

Tel: 212-636-7671

Fax: 646-312-8238

Email: feerickcenter@law.fordham.edu

New York Women's Bar Association Foundation Fellows
New York Women's Bar Association Foundation Fellows