Press Release

Cooley’s Pro Bono Practice Adds Duo Focused on Racial Justice, Client Partnerships

March 24, 2022

New York – March 24, 2022 – Kristen Johnson and Kara Wilson have joined Cooley as special counsel in the firm’s pro bono practice. Arriving from the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund (LDF) and Meta, respectively, they advise on various pro bono issues and client partnerships.

“Kristen and Kara have extensive experience advocating on a diverse range of matters, and we are delighted to have them join our pro bono team,” said Maureen Alger, partner and manager of the firm’s pro bono practice. “Kristen’s commitment to advancing racial justice and Kara’s ability to create lasting client partnerships will both strengthen our pro bono practice and enable us to better address the important challenges our clients face.”

During her tenure at LDF, Johnson litigated civil rights cases in trial and appellate courts. Her portfolio included voting rights, educational equity, economic justice and criminal justice. Johnson previously served as a law clerk to the late Judge Harry Pregerson on the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

“Cooley’s pro bono team has in-depth knowledge and understanding of the ever-growing challenges individuals face,” Johnson said. “I’ve been impressed by the firm’s commitment to racial justice issues and am thrilled to join the team.”

Wilson has a broad range of pro bono experience. As a previous Cooley associate, she developed several pro bono initiatives and advocated on behalf of individuals and organizations across multiple practice areas, including immigrant rights, LGBTQ+ rights and criminal justice reform. As in-house counsel, Wilson maintained an active pro bono practice, including partnering with legal services organizations focused on criminal justice reform.

“I’m excited to rejoin my Cooley colleagues and contribute to pro bono collaboration across the firm,” Wilson said. “The firm is a leader in advocating for individuals in a wide variety of social justice matters, and I am eager to dive back into this work and also engage our corporate clients in this work with us.”

Johnson and Wilson will join the New York and San Francisco offices, respectively.

About Cooley LLP

Cooley partners with local and national legal services organizations to represent hundreds of pro bono clients annually. Through its pro bono work, Cooley empowers individuals to seek justice and opportunity, and provides nonprofit organizations with the tools they need to effect change and support underserved communities.

Cooley has 1,500 lawyers across 17 offices in the United States, Asia and Europe.

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