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New York Housing Law for the Low-Income Client 2015


Speaker(s): Afua Atta-Mensah, Diana Vaynshenker, Justin Jose R.S. Lim, Kamilla Sjödin
Recorded on: Oct. 14, 2015
PLI Program #: 59545

Afua Atta-Mensah is the new Executive Director of Community Voices Heard. Prior to this position, she was the Director of Litigation at the Safety Net Project of the Urban Justice Center. She received her Bachelors from Trinity College where she was a Presidential Fellow and is a graduate of Fordham University School of Law where she was a Stein Scholar.

Prior to joining the Urban Justice Center, Afua was a staff attorney in The Legal Aid Society’s Civil Practice Law Reform Unit, the Policy Director at the Center for Working Families, and was the recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship that sponsored her work at the International Federation of Women Attorneys-Accra, Ghana. Afua has also worked as an advisor to community based organizations throughout New York City and has served as an adjunct professor at Fordham Law.


Justin Jose R.S. Lim has been an attorney with The Legal Aid Society (“LAS”) since 2007.  From 2007 through March 2014, he was an attorney in the housing units of the Harlem Community Law Office (LAS) and the Brooklyn Neighborhood Office (LAS). In April 2014, Justin joined LAS’s Brooklyn Office for the Aging.  There, he represents low-income senior citizens in eviction proceedings such as holdovers, nonpayment proceedings, and Housing Authority administrative hearings. 

Justin received his undergraduate degree from McGill University. In 2006, he earned his law degree from Seton Hall University School of Law and also served as a judicial law clerk in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Family Division.  In 2011, Justin received his Comparative Law LL.M. from McGill University. 

Justin is a member of the Board of Directors of Ma-Yi Theater Company, which is a not-for-profit organization whose primary mission is to develop and produce new plays by Asian American writers.


Diana Vaynshenker has been an attorney with the Legal Aid Society’s Brooklyn Office for the Aging since 2007, where she represents low income senior citizens. Ms. Vaynshenker has litigated cases in Housing Court, Supreme Court, and at the Appellate Term, and has represented clients at administrative proceedings. Ms. Vaynshenker has assisted many clients with SCRIE applications, administrative appeals, and Article 78 proceedings.

Ms. Vaynshenker received both her undergraduate and law degree from Fordham University.


Kamilla is the Director of Eviction Prevention Services at the Safety Net Project of the Urban Justice Center where she supervises their landlord/tenant practice. Previously, she supervised the Housing Project at the New York Legal Assistance Group, which provides legal services to tenants throughout the five boroughs primarily through direct representation in Housing Court and before various agencies. Kamilla also worked for the New York City Council as the Counsel to the Committee on Housing and Buildings and the Subcommittee on Public Housing in which capacity she drafted housing related legislation and worked on citywide housing policies. She has experience providing direct services to clients living with HIV/AIDS and after graduating Rutgers School of Law—Newark completed a clerkship with the Hon. Edith K. Payne, J.A.D. in the Superior Court of New Jersey Appellate Division.