chevron-down Created with Sketch Beta.

LGBT Public Interest Scholarship Recipients


(L-R) Indira Rahman, Tyler Elyse Mills, Zakiya Lewis

(L-R) Indira Rahman, Tyler Elyse Mills, Zakiya Lewis


Indira Rahman (they/them)

Indira is a queer, non-binary asylum seeker from Bangladesh. Prior to law school, they received a BA in Astrophysics and Government from Franklin & Marshall College and served as the lead researcher on the world’s first quantitative index on LGBT human rights in 204 countries.  Indira is a queer, non-binary asylum seeker from Bangladesh. Prior to law school, they received a BA in Astrophysics and Government from Franklin & Marshall College and served as the lead researcher on the world’s first quantitative index on LGBT human rights in 204 countries.  Their research on the first global landscape study of transgender rights was published in the Journal of Human Rights.  This summer, they are interning at the World Bank in Washington, DC. While learning about the legal dimensions of international finance and inclusive development, Indira is crafting a case study on economic access and legal inclusion featuring LGBTQ+ asylum seekers.

Taylor Elyse Mills (she/they)

Taylor Elyse Mills is a dual degree student at Michigan State University. She completed her JD in spring 2023 and is a Doctoral Candidate in Philosophy with a specialization in Engaged Philosophy of Law & Policy. Taylor's scholarship and professional work are social justice-oriented, with a particular passion for addressing sexual and gender-based violence against queer, BIPOC communities and developing better policies to support survivors while preventing future violence.  With experience in Gender and Sexuality Law and in Indigenous law interning for the Little Travers Bay Bands of Odawa Indians.  Taylor advocates for addressing issues of social justice, like sexual violence through inter-sectional, anti-colonial, cross-disciplinary, and community-based ways. This Fall Taylor looks forward to leading a data ethics project at the Research Institute for Structural Change to increase transparency around legal failures to support queer, BIPOC survivors.

Zakiya Lewis (she/her)

Zakiya Lewis (she/her) is a 2023 graduate of NYU School of Law. As a first generation American and college graduate, she earned her undergraduate degree in Sociology and African American Studies from Harvard University. In pursuit of her passion for social justice and educational equity, she became a middle school teacher in Washington, DC for five years before enrolling in law school with the goal of dismantling systems of oppression and advocating or marginalized communities. As a Root-Tilden-Kern Public Interest Scholar at NYU Legal Defense.  She will begin her public interest legal career as a Skadden Fellow with the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law, challenging anti-diversity and inclusion legislation.  As a Black queer woman and former educator, she will focus her project on supporting low-income students with marginalized, intersectional identities--particularly queer students of color.  


(L-R) Chanel Chawalit,  Harry Chiu, Clementine Stormes

(L-R) Chanel Chawalit, Harry Chiu, Clementine Stormes


Chanel Chawalit

Chanel Chawalit is a rising 2L student at the University of  California Davis School of Law with a passion for public interest work, immigration, and criminal law.  As a queer Asian American, Chanel is deeply invested in expanding justice to marginalized queer and Asian communities.  Chanel is currently a summer legal intern at Oasis Legal services, a non-profit that provides asylum and immigration services to LGBTQ+ immigrants.  She plans to continue her work with the Asian Pacific American Law Student Association and engaging even more in public interest law in the upcoming year.

Clementine Stormes

Clementine Stormes is a rising 3L at the City University of New York (CUNY) School of Law, where she is training to become a public interest attorney. She is also Managing Articles Editor of the CUNY Law Review, one of the nation’s leading public interest law publications.  For Summer 2022, Clementine is interning with the Chosen Family Law Center, a nonprofit that provides LGBTQIA+ and non-nuclear families.  With a strong passion for justice, Clementine is dedicated to using her legal training to fight for trans liberation and workers’ rights.   

Harry Chiu

Harry Chiu (he/him) is a recent graduate of Harvard Law School from Vancouver, Canada. At Harvard, Harry was an active member of Lambda, the LGBTQ+ affinity group, where he mentored numerous students to pursue public interest careers. 


2021 LGBT Public Interest Scholarship Recipients

2021 LGBT Public Interest Scholarship Recipients

(L-R) Lydia Harris, Matthew Palmquist, Cirrus Jahangiri


Lydia Renee Harris

Lydia Harris is a non binary law student with a passion for public interest law. They currently attend St. Mary’s University School of Law in San Antonio. Outside of St. Mary’s, Lydia has participated in the Texas Access to Justice Internship Program and has been an Equal Justice America Fellow. Prior to moving to San Antonio, Lydia earned their undergraduate degree in medical anthropology and global health from the University of Washington in Seattle.
Lydia’s interest in LGBT advocacy stems from their lived experiences as a non binary person, their educational experiences at the University of Washington, and their pro bono experience working with the Gender Affirmation Project.

Matthew Palmquist

Matt Palmquist is a rising 3L and Public Interest Scholar at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law. During his 1L summer, Matt worked for the LA Center for Law and Justice, helping survivors of human trafficking apply for T and U visas.
During his 2L year, Matt participated in USC's Immigration Clinic and ex-terned for the LA Immigration Courts. This summer, Matt is a legal intern at the ACLU of Texas, contributing to impact litigation and policy advocacy on behalf of marginalized groups.  After graduation, Matt hopes to embark on a career in public interest to fight for immigrants' rights and influence U.S. immigration policy for the better.

Cirrus Jahangiri

Cirrus Jahangiri is a Summer Law Clerk for the Center for Workers’ Rights.  His mission is to provide pro bono legal work to low-income workers in the Sacramento area. Cirrus believes that law is the most effective vehicle for expanding the rights of the LGBTQ+ community and wishes to become an impact litigator after completing law school. Cirrus has furthered his commitment to the LGBTQ+ community through his work as a Student Counselor for the University of California, Davis Gender and Name Change Clinic as well as a a member, Board Member, and now SacLegal Liaison for the Lambda Legal Law Students Association. Cirrus is currently finishing up his Juris Doctor from the University of California, Davis School of Law and will graduate in 2023, with a certificate in Pro Bono work and working to complete a certificate in Public Interest Law. 

ABA Press Release 2021


Stephanie Sorquira

Stephanie Sorquira

2020 ABA Public Interest Scholarship Recipient


Stephanie Sorquira

Stephanie Sorquira is a 1L student at the City University of New York School of Law (CUNY Law), focusing on public interest law. Before coming to CUNY Law, Stephanie worked at the Institute for Developing Nations and the International Human Trafficking Institute.  In both places, Stephanie advocated for the inclusion of LGBTQ+ programming, highlighting the importance of including LGBTQ+ issues in democracy-building, human rights, and anti-human trafficking. While working at the Institute for Developing Nations, Stephanie attended Emory University School of Law, where they received a Juris Master with a focus on International Human Rights Law.  While at Emory Law, Stephanie served as Conference Chair for OUTLaw and had the privilege of co-organizing interesting conferences on immigration and public health, one of which was named “No Pride in Borders.” Stephanie is also an HSF Scholar at the Hispanic Scholarship Fund. 


( L-R) Bryanna Jenkins, August Hieber

( L-R) Bryanna Jenkins, August Hieber

2019 LGBT Scholarship Recipients


Bryanna Jenkins

Bryanna Jenkins, a proud Baltimore native, is a December 2019 graduate of DePaul University College of Law in Chicago, IL. She is the founder and first executive director of the Baltimore Transgender Alliance. She organized the first Baltimore Trans March of Resilience. Her legal writings examine the intersections of racial, gender, and queer identities under the law. Her article Birth Certificate with a Benefit: Using LGBTQ Jurisprudence to Make the Argument for a Transgender Person’s Constitutional Right to Amended Identity Documents was published in the Winter 2019 edition of the CUNY Law Review. 
Bryanna was selected for the 2020-2021 George N. Lindsay Civil Rights Fellowship at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law in Washington, D.C.  Bryanna’s fellowship will focus on advocating on the behalf of black and brown queer youths who face discrimination from educational institutions. Bryanna will work on her fellowship within the organization’s educational opportunities project group.

August Hieber

August Hieber is an Equal Justice Works Fellow sponsored by PepsiCo, Inc. August established the Proud to Thrive Project, a program that provides legal services and outreach for LGBT elders. The Proud to Thrive Project includes mobile legal clinics for LGBT elders at LGBT-affirming organizations, a pro bono initiative in which volunteer attorneys assist LGBT elders in completing advance directives, and an educational campaign to provide LGBT elders with culturally responsive spaces to access and discuss information about common legal issues.  They also provides LGBT elder cultural responsiveness training to legal professionals. August joined CDEL in 2018 as a legal intern during their third year of law school. August attended the University of Cincinnati and received their undergraduate degree in Political Science with Honors in 2014. August received their Juris Doctor from Chicago-Kent College of Law in 2019, with a certificate in Public Interest Law. August was also awarded the Dean’s Distinguished Public Service Award. While in law school, they became a Volunteer Education Ambassador for the National Resource Center on LGBT Aging.  

Support our LGBT Scholars

The scholarship program will help law students to pursue the promoting civil and human rights of LGBTQ persons and help secure full and equal treatment in the legal profession and justice system.

To make a charitable gift to the
SOGI LGBT Scholarship Fund, click here