- National Center for Youth Law - https://youthlaw.org -

At the Center — July-Sep 2010

NCYL Welcomes New Director of Development

Nancy Berger

Nancy Berger

NCYL is pleased to welcome Nancy Berger as its new Director of Development. Nancy has spent more than a decade in fundraising helping non-profit organizations fulfill their visions. She brings a wealth of experience in philanthropy, including leadership in the areas of foundation support, individual giving, and special events.

Most recently she served as Donor Relations Manager at Knoxville Zoological Gardens where she oversaw a capital campaign to rebuild a significant portion of the zoo.  She worked in educational fundraising as Director of Corporate and Foundation Support at the Museum of the City of New York, and spent seven years as a grant writer for the Exploratorium in San Francisco. Nancy has a B.S. in Anthropology from Tulane University.

Aliza Kaliski Joins NCYL as Of Counsel

Aliza Kaliski

Aliza Kaliski

Aliza Kaliski is a volunteer attorney with NCYL, working on juvenile justice issues with attorneys Pat Arthur and Patricia Soung.  She graduated from UC Berkeley in 2001 with a double major in Political Science and Mass Communications, and a minor in Public Policy.  Aliza attended Northwestern University School of Law, graduating in 2005.  Until May 2010, she worked as an assistant appellate defender at the Office of the State Appellate Defender in Chicago, representing indigent adult and juvenile defendants on direct and collateral appeals from criminal convictions and adjudications. She joined NCYL in September 2010.

NCYL Welcomes Two New Deferred Associates!

Sara Madge and Erica Turcios

Sara Madge and Erica Turcios

Sara Madge joined NCYL in September 2010 as a deferred associate from Ropes & Gray LLP, and is celebrating the recent news that she has passed the Massachusetts Bar! While at NCYL, Sara is working to ensure access to mental health care for foster children. She is also working on adolescent health care issues, with a focus on consent and confidentiality laws.  Sara earned her B.A. Magna Cum Laude from the University of Southern California in 2003 and her J.D Cum Laude from Harvard Law School in 2010.  Prior to law school, she spent a year as a post-baccalaureate student at UCLA studying Roman art and archaeology.  During law school, Sara was a Senior Technical Editor on the Harvard Law and Policy Review and was on the board of the school’s chapter of the American Constitution Society. She also interned at the National Network for Youth, lobbying on behalf of runaway and homeless youth.

Erica Turcios joined NCYL in October 2010 as a deferred associate from the San Francisco office of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.  At NCYL, she is a member of the litigation team for TR v. Dreyfus, a civil rights lawsuit against Washington state for failure to provide adequate care to children with serious mental health problems. She is also working on other issues related to child welfare system reform.  Erica earned her B.A. from UC Berkeley in 2005, and her J.D. from University of Michigan Law School in 2010.  During law school, Erica was a student attorney for the University of Michigan Child Advocacy Law Clinic, where she represented children and parents in child welfare cases.  She was also a research assistant for the Director of the National Quality Improvement Center on the Representation of Children, a federal project to gather, develop, and communicate knowledge on child representation and clearly define the role of the child’s legal representative.  Additionally, Erica was a Note Editor for the University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform, and published an article in the Michigan Child Welfare Law Journal about the premature removal of children from their homes.

New Fellows Jessica Breslin and Maya Herr-Anderson

Jessica Breslin and Maya Herr-Anderson [1]

Jessica Breslin and Maya Herr-Anderson

Jessica Breslin recently graduated from Georgetown University Law Center, where she was a section editor for the Georgetown Journal of Gender and the Law.  Jessica earned her undergraduate degree from the Silver School of Social Work at NYU, with a double major in politics.  During the summer of 2008, she worked at First Star, a child advocacy organization in Washington, DC, where she researched and helped draft a report on a child’s right to counsel.  Prior to law school, Jessica worked in counseling services at the Domestic Violence Bureau of the District Attorney’s office in Kings County, NY, providing individual counseling and group therapy session for victims of domestic violence.  While previously clerking at NCYL in the summer of 2009, Jessica worked on mental health, and foster care issues. After being awarded a Post-JD Public Service Program Fellowship, Jessica has returned to NCYL and is currently working with Staff Attorney Bryn Martyna on NCYL’s Henry A. v. Willden, seeking damages on behalf of foster children harmed by the child welfare system in Clark County (Las Vegas), Nevada. In her free time, Jessica enjoys watching football and plotting revenge on the mosquitoes of Lake Merritt.

Maya Herr-Anderson is a recent graduate of USC Law School and is a fellow at NCYL through a USC Graduate Public Interest Grant.  She will be working with attorney Jesse Hahnel on NCYL’s Foster Youth Education Initiative. Maya also works as a research and project assistant for a social justice lawyering curriculum development project funded by the California Endowment. The goal of the project is to develop a comprehensive skills course for law schools and advocacy organizations to train new public interest advocates.  At USC, Maya worked as a research assistant for the USC Small Business Clinic.  She also interned for Public Counsel throughout law school and spent a summer doing policy work in the office of Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.  Maya is originally from Albuquerque, NM and received her undergraduate degree from UC Santa Barbara, where she double majored in Political Science and Spanish.

New Law Clerk and Intern

  • Katherine Piggott-Tooke, Chris Switzer [2]
  • [3]

    Chris Switzer

Katherine Piggott-Tooke is a third-year student at Berkeley Law. Upon graduating from Haverford College, Katherine taught at San Francisco Friends School, tutored at a homeless shelter in San Francisco, and worked as a fundraiser at an international development organization in New York.  During law school, Katherine worked in the California Asylum Representation Clinic, the East Bay Community Law Center, and at a plaintiff-side firm supporting class action litigation in areas such as human rights and civil rights. She also served as co-president of the Berkeley Law Foundation. At NCYL, Katherine is doing education advocacy work with Senior Attorney Leecia Welch; assisting on T.R. v. Dreyfus, a lawsuit aimed at improving access to mental health care for Washington youth; and helping with Henry A. v. Willden, NCYL’s foster care reform case in Nevada. In her free time, Katherine loves exploring California.

Chris Switzer is a communications intern at NCYL, working with Communications Director Tracy Schroth. He also works as an administrative assistant in Berkeley at the International Computer Science Institute, where he manages communications and website maintenance. His interests include public interest law, literature, and journalism. While an undergraduate student in the English Department at UC Berkeley, he interned at the National Senior Citizens Law Center and the National Immigration Law Center. In addition, he has worked at local newspapers in California and Utah, where he covered stories on teen drug use and teen welfare.

NCYL Kids Celebrate Halloween


Azadeh Kiran Quraishi Haq (aka “The Cow”) 6 months, daughter of Staff Attorney Fiza Quraishi


Calvin Leland Bruss (aka “The Wizard”) 13 months, son of Staff Attorney Bryn Martyna


Eleanor Daphne Hahnel (aka “Brian Wilson”) 3 months, daughter of Attorney Jesse Hahnel


Eli (aka “Tigger”) brother of NCYL Fellow Jessica Breslin


Ethan Yu (aka “Gordon the Train”) 3 years, nephew of Staff Attorney Patricia Soung


Fifer Brennan Bates (aka “The Penguin”) 9 months, son of Senior Attorney Leecia Welch


Kimoy EricaFaye Tracy (aka “Minnie Mouse”) great-granddaughter of Legal Secretary Ethel Oden-Brown


Lilli (aka “the Pumpkin”), cousin of Deferred Associate Erica Turcios


Miguel (aka “The Pirate”) 8 years; Jesse (aka “The Stormtrooper”) 6 years; Celi (aka “The Ladybug”) 2 years; Eli (aka “Tigger”) 1 year; and Riley (aka “The Princess”) 5 years – all siblings of NCYL Fellow Jessica Breslin (aka “The Linebacker”)


Samuel Berger (aka “The Tiger”) 1 year, son of Development Director Nancy Berger


Santiago Manuel Preciado, son of Board Member Hector Javier Preciado