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2019 Community-Oriented Defender (COD) Network Conference 
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EJ

Elizabeth Justesen

Legal Aid Society of Suffolk County
Chief community outreach Officer
Central Islip, NY
Elizabeth Justesen is the community outreach director of the Legal Aid Society of Suffolk County, a nonprofit law firm representing indigent residents in Suffolk County to help them navigate the family and criminal courts. Previously, she was a practicing attorney at the Legal Aid Society of Suffolk County for 10 years, having spent four years in Family Court representing children and parents and then six years in criminal court representing persons alleged to have committed criminal acts. In addition to a law degree, she holds a master’s degree in social work, and, for the last three years, has overseen and developed the Social Work Bureau within the organization. Elizabeth conducts numerous outreach programs educating community members in the various issues they experience in the court system, including understanding CPS cases, custody, domestic violence, and knowing your rights. She is also the chair of the Resources Sub-Committee for the Suffolk County Re-Entry Task Force, which works to improve the lives of parolees re-entering the community. In addition, Elizabeth is the supervising attorney for Breaking Barriers, a pro bono project at Touro Law School that assists persons with criminal convictions to overcome barriers to employment and educational licenses through the application of certificates of relief from civil disabilities and certificates of good conduct.