Linda Morris ’17 has been selected by the Skadden Foundation as one of 29 fellows for 2018.
The Skadden fellowship program provides young lawyers with financial support for two years to practice public interest law. For the fellowship term, Morris will work with the American Civil Liberties Union’s Women’s Rights Project to “provide direct representation and advocacy to dismantle housing barriers for low-income women of color, due to landlord screening policies that bar applicants with eviction records in Baltimore County, Maryland, and beyond.”
This honor follows a career committed to public interest law that predates her time at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. Morris explains, “Prior to law school, I worked for several years as an advocate for women facing homelessness due to domestic violence, and through my experience, I became aware of the various barriers that make it difficult for low-income individuals to obtain safe and stable housing — including a prior eviction record.”
While at Maryland Carey Law, Morris continued her public interest focus by volunteering with the Maryland Public Interest Law Project (MPILP), a student-run organization celebrating its 30th anniversary this year focused on increasing awareness of and participation in public service legal work. Morris, serving in a leadership position, was instrumental in ensuring MPILP could provide 28 students with public interest summer grants each year.
Morris credits her clinical work at Maryland Carey Law with “allow[ing] me to better understand what an incredible honor it is to be a public interest lawyer.” She recounts, “One of my most valuable experiences at Maryland Carey Law was the opportunity to serve as a student attorney in the Appellate Advocacy and Law Reform clinic. As a student attorney, I advocated on behalf of low-income clients through appellate impact litigation, and I was able to submit briefs and provide oral argument before the Maryland Court of Special Appeals.”
Maxwell Stearns, Venable, Baetjer & Howard Professor of Law, had no shortage of praise for his former research assistant, “Linda consistently reveals herself as highly dedicated to whatever tasks she takes on and is a consummate professional.” He continued, “Although I am very pleased to learn that she has been selected for the highly prestigious Skadden fellowship, I am not surprised. I know she will bring honor to that position, just as she has to so many activities while she was a student here at the law school.”
Morris joins former fellows and alumni Susan Waysdorf ‘91, Luciene Parsley ‘02, Dorcas Gilmore ’07, and Ingrid Lofgren ‘10 as well as Skadden alumna and Maryland Carey Law Professor Leigh Goodmark.