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Trauma-Informed Lawyering: Strategies and Best Practices


Speaker(s): Hamra Ahmad, Nicole Fidler
Recorded on: Jan. 7, 2021
PLI Program #: 315717

Hamra Ahmad is Director of Law and Policy at Her Justice, a nonprofit organization providing legal services to women living in poverty throughout New York City by training and mentoring volunteer attorneys to address individual and systemic barriers.

Prior to joining Her Justice, Ms. Ahmad was Executive Director of the Hudson Valley Justice Center (HVJC), a nonprofit organization providing civil legal services to immigrants.   She has also served as Director of the Center for Legal Services at My Sisters’ Place, a nonprofit organization working with victims of domestic violence and human trafficking.  She co-authored a chapter in the Services for Trafficking Victims: A Brief Guide for Lawyers on best practices when working with trafficking survivors. She is a leading expert in the area of Immigration and Domestic Violence and Human Trafficking, conducting trainings and presentations to law enforcement, judges, and social service agencies.

Ms. Ahmad also implemented the Immigration Project of the Legal Aid Society of Minneapolis, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, providing a variety of immigration services to the large East African resettlement population.  Ms. Ahmad received her J.D., cum laude, from the University of Minnesota Law School.  She is licensed to practice law in New York and Minnesota.


Nicole Fidler, Esq. is the Director of the Pro Bono Program at Sanctuary for Families, a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting survivors of domestic violence, sex trafficking, and other forms of gender-based violence.  In addition to managing Sanctuary's robust pro bono practice, which consists of over 1,000 pro bono attorneys, Nicole also represents survivors seeking help with Sanctuary’s family and matrimonial law practice.

Prior to joining Sanctuary, Nicole was a litigator at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy, LLP.  While at Milbank she was actively involved in pro bono work, focusing primarily on family, criminal, and immigration matters. Nicole is the co-author of a chapter published in the Lawyer’s Manual on Domestic Violence, entitled “Litigating Family Offense Proceedings.” She is co-chair of the New York City Bar Association’s Pro Bono & Legal Services Committee and a member of the Public Interest Pro Bono Association (PIPBA). In her pre-law life, Nicole worked in communications and development for the Organization for Autism Research, a national non-profit organization dedicated to funding applied autism research.