Margarita P. Sandoval
Dianne Blakely, Administrative Director
Dianne began at the Law Center in the spring 2001 as the Administrative Director. Her current responsibilities include office management, finance, grant reporting and monitoring. She supervises the receptionist and volunteer undergraduates. Dianne has an extensive background in Human Resources having worked at a law office, retail establishment and high tech businesses.
Reuben Castillo, Paralegal
Reuben grew up in east San José, and is familiar with the problems many of our clients encounter in their daily lives. He worked as a delivery person until an industrial injury sent him for retraining as a paralegal. While studying at Santa Clara University’s Paralegal Institute, Reuben volunteered at the Community Law Center. Upon graduating in 1995, Reuben began work as a full time paralegal at the Community Law Center. He interviews clients, works as an interpreter (he speaks fluent Spanish), supervises the consumer and debtor clinics, does community outreach, supervises entry of statistics into the Center’s database, generates data required for reports to grantor and handles administrative tasks as needed.
Marisol Escalera, Legal Assistant
Marisol Escalera first joined the Law Center in 1999-2000 as a sophomore undergraduate student at SCU. Her intention was to complete her hours as a volunteer for a Sociology course that required the hours. However, at the end of the quarter, she knew her commitment had grown to more than just earning hours. She learned to value the clients and the fact that they deal with injustice on a daily basis. Her passion for public service keeps her motivated and determined to persevere on a daily basis. She has found that following her passion of serving others, has helped her gain the freedom to experience joy, peace, and victory no matter what comes against her.
Marisol was born and raised in San José. She is an SCU Alumni with a BS in Sociology and an Emphasis in Law and Society, as well as a double major in Spanish studies. She first began working for SCU’s Psychology Department in 1998, then decided to take a legal position with the Santa Clara County’s District Attorney’s office. Wanting to gain experience in the legal field also led her to apply as a part-time counselor for the Probation Department of Santa Clara County. Coming back to the Law Center and working with the community has been her most recent “blessing”!
Mirna Henriquez, Receptionist
Mirna began at the law center as a volunteer interpreter. She was later hired as our receptionist.
Sergio López, Director of External Relations
Sergio López joined the Alexander Community Law Center in 2002.
He was born and grew up in Mexico City. He earned a BA in Spanish Literature and a BS in Computer Science from Santa Clara University, worked as a software engineer for IBM for six years, and then went back to business school. He earned his MBA from Thunderbird, School of Global Management, in December 2000. In the middle of his business studies, he took on a job as an International Sales and Marketing officer for a French software company, and he lived and worked in Paris, France, for five years. Along the way, he learned French and Portuguese fluently. These experiences and skills make him the ideal person to assist the Alexander Community Law Center with its Spanish, French and Portuguese-speaking clients in all the disciplines of law that the Center handles.
In addition to working with a selected number of clients, Sergio handles the day-to-day communication with Santa Clara University, Law Center alumni, financial supporters, the media and the community at large.
“I’ve had the good fortune of working with many clients over the years at the Law Center. To many, we are their only hope to find justice when all other doors close before them. The satisfaction I feel when we win a tough case simply has no comparison. We make a difference is people’s lives! This is why I enjoy working here.”, says Sergio.
Margarita P. Sandoval, Legal Assistant
Margarita is the legal assistant and clinic coordinator for the immigration practice area. Margarita joined the law center in summer of 2002. Since then she has been passionate about helping immigrants navigate and understand the criminal justice system in this country.
Margarita is particularly interested in helping women and children victims of domestic violence and other traumatic events. She has extensive experience working with victims of crimes, human trafficking and asylum seekers.
Margarita is not only a proud mom, but continues to pursue a degree in criminal justice. She also enjoys reading, traveling and spending as much time as possible at her favorite place, Yosemite.
In addition to its staff, the Community Law Center is fortunate to have the support of hundreds of volunteers every year. Their contributions are as diverse as they are significant. The KGACLC volunteers serve as:
- attorneys volunteering their time at advice clinics
- attorneys providing consultations and lectures to students handling cases
- Santa Clara Law students counseling at advice clinics
- Santa Clara Law students handling cases
- SCU undergraduates interpreting
- SCU undergraduates helping to develop brochures, newsletters, fliers
- community volunteers helping to interpret
- others sharing their expertise in photography, graphic design, tax issues, statistics, computer programming, writing, and whatever skills the Community Law Center happens to need