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Mary Louise Frampton, director of the Henderson Center for Social Justice, has a long record of involvement in social justice issues. She recently retired from a Central Valley civil rights practice that focused on issues of discrimination in employment. Prior to the establishment of that firm in 1974, Frampton was the directing attorney of the Madera office of California Rural Legal Services. She was on the first board of directors of the California Women Lawyers Association, was the founder of the San Joaquin Valley Chapter of the Federal Bar Association and helped establish the first local chapter of the federal Inns of Court.
Frampton has been involved in a number of important social justice causes over the course of her career. In the 1970s she was instrumental in establishing National Land for People, an organization of small farmers and farm workers. As the group's lawyer, she won a series of landmark federal cases that forced the federal government and large agribusiness corporations to comply with the 160 acre limitation law and end the diversion of federally subsidized water away from small family farmers. Such victories enabled small farmers and farm workers to purchase desirable agricultural land and become economically independent. Frampton authored an article on that legal struggle for the UC Davis Law Review .
Frampton has represented several community coalitions, including a group of Latino, African-American and women's groups that increased diversity in hiring and programming in network and local television stations. The second-largest school district in the state was the target of several of Frampton's Title VII cases to enhance promotional opportunities for African-American educators. In the 1980s she obtained the largest economic damages figure in an employment case awarded by the Fair Employment and Housing Commission, and in the early 1990s she won the biggest verdict in a sex discrimination action in the Central Valley. She also represented women in their efforts to compel enforcement of Title IX at state universities and obtain slander damages against a prominent radio personality for his homophobic and misogynist attacks on women athletes. On appointment by the federal court in Sacramento, Frampton continues to represent two death row inmates in their federal habeas corpus actions.
In 2003 Frampton was named a National Bellow Scholar by the Public Interest Committee of the American Association of Law Schools. The award honors projects that involve law students and faculty in anti-poverty or access to justice work.
B.A., Brown University
J.D., Harvard University
Wilda L. White, Executive Director
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Wilda L. White joined the Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice in December, 2008, as the Center's Executive Director. She brings a broad base of experience to the position in both law and management. White began her career as a Staff Attorney at The Legal Aid Society in the South Bronx, primarily representing Spanish-speaking clients in unemployment, SSI, and general assistance appeals, and landlord-tenant law. After returning to California, she joined Sterns & Walker, first as an associate handling insurance bad faith, civil rights, and personal injury cases, and later becoming the firm's managing attorney. There she successfully resolved what was considered at the time to be the first disability insurance AIDS cases. She was also instrumental in persuading the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to end its practice of incarcerating mentally ill prisoners in the general prison population.
Immediately before joining the Henderson Center, White was a partner with Walker, Hamilton & White, where she handled personal injury, wrongful death, civil rights, and employment discrimination cases. She has tried over 30 cases before administrative law judges, trial courts, and juries.
She was also an Assistant City Editor at The Miami Herald during the time that the newspaper won the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. In addition, a story she investigated and wrote resulted in the release of a wrongfully incarcerated prisoner. White was also an international management consultant with McKinsey & Company, where she specialized in strategic planning.
From 2004 until she joined the Henderson Center, she was a Board Member of the San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association. She also served as a Director of the Oakland Unified School District Board of Education from 2000 to 2002.
In 2007, she was recognized as a Northern California Super Lawyer.
She is licensed to practice law in the States of California and New York, and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
B.A., University of Vermont
J.D., University of California, Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall)
M.B.A., Harvard University Graduate School of Business Administration
Carol J. Silverman joined the research staff of the Henderson Center in October 2009. She previously served as Research Director of the Center for Self Help Research (CSHR) at the Public Health Institute, Berkeley, California, and also The Institute of Nonprofit Organization Management at the University of San Francisco (INOM).
She has a broad social science background, specializing in the fields of poverty, homelessness, mental illness and affordable housing. At CSHR, she served as the co-principal investigator on a series of studies funded by the National Institute of Health/Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Agency. The series studied the effectiveness of services operated for people with a mental health diagnosis by similarly diagnosed people. As a part of this research, she spent a year conducting field observations at drop in centers that served people who were homeless, often with dual substance abuse and mental health diagnoses. At INOM, she supervised a series of studies benefiting nonprofits and philanthropy. Among the topics studied were: a report series documenting the role of nonprofits and philanthropy in selected regions of California, including Silicon Valley, Riverside/San Bernardino and San Francisco; a study of foundation policies towards general operating support; the uses of technology by grassroots nonprofits; and the racial, ethnic and gender diversity of management personnel in San Francisco nonprofits. She also worked with the Foundation Center and Northern California Grantmakers on their study of the racial and ethnic diversity of the California Foundation sector. (Selected publications can be found at www.usfca.edu/inom.) Finally, while at INOM, she provided data consultation to a number of foundations including the California Endowment, the East Bay Community Foundation, and the San Francisco Community Foundation.
Silverman received her Ph.D. in Sociology from UC Berkeley and was a postdoctoral fellow in the School of Social Welfare. She has published extensively in the fields of housing, mental health and nonprofits and foundations and has presented research findings to a special subcommittee of the California State Legislature, and a San Francisco city government subcommittee. She has also presented to intermediaries serving foundations such as the Foundation Center, Northern California Grantmakers, Southern California Grantmakers and the Center for Effective Philanthropy.
Her research experience includes quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection and analysis, with a specialty in survey methodology. Silverman has taught both undergraduate and graduate courses in urban history, poverty, homelessness, environmental sustainability, research methodology, statistics and program evaluation as a lecturer or adjunct faculty at UC Berkeley, San Francisco State, University of San Francisco and New College of California.
B.A., Princeton University
M.A., University of California, Berkeley
Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley
Anita Lopez is a creative thinker with a passion for creating social change. She is fervent youth advocate who has worked in areas of reproductive health, cultural competency and community advocacy and organizing for over a decade. Ms. Lopez has a Masters’ degree in public policy, specializing in education policy. Her most recent work focuses on evaluating restorative justice programs in school settings for both San Francisco and Oakland Unified School Districts.
B.A., San Francisco State University
M.P.P., Mills College
Ariana Ceja, Program Assistant
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Ariana Ceja joined the Henderson Center in 2008. Before joining the Henderson Center she worked for both the Vice President for Student Services and the Director of Judicial Affairs at California State University, Long Beach.
B.A., Humboldt State University
M.S., California State University, Long Beach