“My experience was really eye-opening, seeing the law in action. I never thought I'd be interested I consumer law and advocacy, but I have grown to love it,” said Maninderjit Singh (right) who clerked with Legal Action of Wisconsin. He is pictured here with Angel Kwaterski, an attorney with Legal Action (left). For more photos of the event celebrating clerks and employers in the program, see the
album on the State Bar of Wisconsin Facebook page.
Aug. 2, 2023 – They are future leaders in the legal profession: 25 rising 2L students from the U.W. Law School and Marquette University Law School who spent the summer learning what it’s like to work as a lawyer.
Last month, the State Bar of Wisconsin celebrated the clerks and employers who participated in the 2023
Diversity Clerkship Program. The program matches first-year law students of diverse backgrounds with legal offices for a 10-week summer clerkship. The program is competitive – in 2023, the program received 74 applications for the 25 positions.
The clerks and employers celebrated the program and their successes at a reception July 20, held at the State Bar Center in Madison.
This year, 25 employers provided law students with paid summer internships. The program over the past 30 years has helped jump-start the careers of more than 585 law students.
“These students – and their employers – grow in their practice and careers because of this program,” said State Bar President Dean Dietrich. “This is the type of program that the State Bar is so proud of – it has a real impact on both the clerks and the employers.”
The employers themselves recognize the value of the Diversity Clerkship Program. Stephane Fabus, of Hall Render Killian Heath & Lyman – one of 25 employers participating this year – said the firm finds new associate attorneys via the program, inviting their summer clerks to join them after graduation.
“We believe that this program has great value for not only the participants, but also our firm and the broader Wisconsin legal community,” Fubus said.
Here is more about what the clerks and employers say about participating in the program:
This year, 25 employers provided 1L law students with paid summer internships. The program over the past 30 years has helped jump-start the careers of more than 585 students from U.W. and Marquette University law schools.
Law Clerks: This Experience Is Priceless
“I have had the chance to work on assignments that matter, that are enjoyable and across a range of areas in the law. The attorneys that I've worked with really value our insight. It's been an amazing summer.” – Emmet Burgos, clerking with Fiserv, Inc.
Shannon Green is communications writer for the State Bar of Wisconsin, Madison. She can be reached by
email or by phone at (608) 250-6135.
“I was given the incredible opportunity to support attorneys during a civil jury trial in the United States Eastern District Court of Wisconsin. This experience allowed me to work side-by-side with attorneys, and I felt like my opinion was truly valued.” – Noella Campbell, clerking with the ACLU of Wisconsin.
“I had a fantastic introduction to health law – I learned everything about Medicare and Medicaid that I possibly could. The attorneys were so patient and willing to work every step of the way with me, even when I didn't know where I could find things within 42 CFR.” – Julia Derzay, clerking with Quartz Health Solutions.
“At the OLR, I had exceptional supervisors and everyone at the office taking an interest in me as a young professional and as a human being. I'm grateful for the experience.” – Nathaniel Douglas, clerking with the Office of Lawyer Regulation.
“Everybody has been so fantastic and willing to speak to me about anything, any question, any concern. They gave me wonderful opportunities and lots of open communication. I didn’t think I would enjoy drafting corporate policy until I actually got the chance to do it.” – Kendall Elliott, clerking with CUNA Mutual Group.
“My experience was really eye-opening, seeing the law in action. I never thought I'd be interested in consumer law and advocacy, but I have grown to love it.” – Maninderjit Singh, Legal Action
“I thought I hated contracts, but at Regal Rexnord all I did were contracts. And I absolutely loved it. Everyone has been honest and funny, and showed me the kind of lawyer I want to be.” – Ella Uylaki, clerking with Regal Rexnord Corporation.
“I didn't realize how much other areas of law, life insurance and health law, intersect with personal injury law. I have learned a lot.” – Lisa Xiong, clerking with Gingras Thomsen & Wachs.
“At the OLR, I had exceptional supervisors and everyone at the office taking an interest in me as a young professional and as a human being. I'm grateful for the experience,” said Nathaniel Douglas, clerking with the Office of Lawyer Regulation. Pictured here are Francis Sullivan, OLR deputy director of litigation (far left); Nathaniel Douglas (second from left); Julie Spoke, OLR deputy director of intake (second from right); and OLR Director Timothy Samuelson (right).
Employers: This Is Worth It
“This is Manitowoc’s first year participating in the State Bar Diversity Clerkship Program. We were impressed by the students and were very happy to be matched with Nimmi Arora. She has been a great addition to the team and provided valuable work and insights to the company.” – Andy Barragry, The Manitowoc Company
“We are always happy to participate in the Diversity Clerkship Program. The program consistently provides us with high-quality talent – in fact, multiple attorneys at Northwestern Mutual participated in the program as law students, both here and with other employers. Our clerk, Mackenzie Retzlaff, has been a great addition to our summer class, and worked on a variety of complex (and hopefully interesting) assignments.” – Andrew McLean, Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company
“The Office of Lawyer Regulation had the pleasure of working with Nate Douglas this past summer. He’s everything we could have hoped for from a 1L clerk: he asked smart questions, was thoughtful in his approach, and proved himself a quick study. The sky’s the limit for Nate. I just hope he benefited as much from us as we did from him.” – Timothy Samuelson, Office of Lawyer Regulation
“Julia Derzay has been a phenomenal summer law clerk for Quartz. She brings great initiative to her work and is keenly aware of how her work contributes to the business. She has developed resources our team will use for many years to come. Julia will be a terrific attorney. We were lucky to have her with us this summer.” – Kristin Degeneffe, Quartz Health Insurance
“Danny Levandoski is a bright and talented law clerk who has been an enormous help on the long-term projects and short-term research assignments we’ve given him to work on this summer. We are better for having Danny be a part of it, and we are excited for what the future holds for this smart and thoughtful soon-to-be attorney.” – Marisa Roubik, Racine City Attorney’s Office
“Miguel Gonzalez has tackled a wide variety of assignments with us so far and we look forward to continuing to see his development firsthand. The future is bright for Miguel.” – Tyrone St. Junior II, Robert W. Baird & Co.
“I didn't realize how much other areas of law, life insurance and health law, intersect with personal injury law. I have learned a lot,” said Lisa Xiong, clerking with Gingras Thomsen & Wachs. She is pictured here (center) with State Bar President Dean Dietrich (left) and Past President Margaret Hickey (right).
“Stafford Rosenbaum’s Diversity Clerkship Program clerk, Jamie Kanchananakhin, makes our firm a better place, making it easy to celebrate him and his future. We can’t wait to see where his career takes him!” –Stafford Rosenbaum, LLP
“During her clerkship, Hailey Lipinski integrated well into our day-to-day rhythm with a positive attitude. Hailey holds the tradition of excellence and professionalism within the State Bar Diversity Clerkship Program.” – Glen Mercier II, Wisconsin Department of Corrections
“I have supervised hundreds of law students over the years. Augie Rice is among the top students I’ve had the pleasure to work with. DOJ was impressed with the quality of the pool of candidates the State Bar selected, and we were thrilled to learn we’d get Augie. The Department of Justice has been a participant in this program for a long time. It’s been a great experience.” – Sonya Bice, Wisconsin Department of Justice
“We are very fortunate to have Duranya Freeman as a legal intern. She immediately immersed herself in the work and began adding value from day one. Alliant Energy appreciates her work and wishes her well for the next academic year!” – Zach Ramirez, Alliant Energy
“Julie Kim jumped into various tasks without hesitation and asked very intelligent and thoughtful questions. She brought a positive and collaborative attitude to the team. Julie will have a very bright future in law.” – Melissa Fitzgerald, Church Mutual Insurance Company
“Kendall Elliott has proven to be a real asset to our legal team. She has been thrown into insurance and financial services, learning a complex web of legal entities, and brings a great perspective to the conversation that I find so valuable.” – Carmen Burnard, CUNA Mutual Group
“We really enjoyed having Ben Kubisiak with us this summer. He asks smart legal questions and spots relevant ‘law in action’ issues. Ben was self-directed and did the research before asking good questions. That’s impressive for a student!” – Amanda Ramaker, Dane County Corporate Counsel
“Our clerk, Connor Cruz, has been an active contributor to Froedtert OGC’s many projects and initiatives, working with several team members, our outside counsel, and various departments within Froedtert Health. Our participation in the DCP has been a positive experience, and we appreciate the State Bar’s investment to make this a successful program for employers and clerks.” – Lisa Gingerich, Froedtert Health Inc.
“Morgan Boyd brought a great energy to our team, is willing to dive into any project we give her, and produces excellent work results. We could not be more pleased to have Morgan on our team and are planning to participate in the Diversity Clerkship Program again next year.” – Barbra Klug, Kohler Co.
“Litigation is complicated and involves many moving (and often simultaneous) pieces. Rare for a law student, Mary Berg has demonstrated a real knack for understanding those pieces and for sorting through what matters and what does not. At Law Forward, Mary has unpackaged complicated constitutional law issues and moved important voting rights disputes toward resolution. Mary is brilliant, and we have truly enjoyed her presence in our office!” – Scott Thompson, Law Forward
“Litigation is complicated and involves many moving (and often simultaneous) pieces. Rare for a law student, Mary Berg has demonstrated a real knack for understanding those pieces and for sorting through what matters and what does not. At Law Forward, Mary has unpackaged complicated constitutional law issues and moved important voting rights disputes toward resolution. Mary is brilliant, and we have truly enjoyed her presence in our office!” said Scott Thompson, Law Forward (right), pictured here with attorney Elizabeth Pierson of Law Forward (left) and clerk Mary Berg (center).
Special Thanks to Our 2023 Employers
American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin*
Alliant Energy Corporation
Church Mutual Insurance Company
CUNA Mutual Group
Dane County Corporate Counsel
Froedtert Health Inc.
Gingras Thomsen & Wachs
Hall Render Killian Heath & Lyman, PC
Madison City Attorney's Office
The Manitowoc Company*
Milwaukee City Attorney's Office
Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company
Office of Lawyer Regulation*
Quartz Health Solutions
Racine City Attorney's Office
Regal Rexnord Corporation
Robert W. Baird & Co.*
Stafford Rosenbaum LLP
Wisconsin Department of Corrections
Wisconsin Department of Justice
Note: * indicates employers participating in the program for the first time this year.
Sponsored by the Wisconsin Law Foundation
The Diversity Clerkship Program reception is sponsored by the
Wisconsin Law Foundation, the charitable arm of the State Bar of Wisconsin. Find out more about the Foundation’s programs by visiting