2019-2020 BPLA Executive Board
PRESIDENT: Eric Jjemba
Eric is the 2019-20 President of Harvard BPLA. Originally from Marlton, NJ, Eric is a sophomore living in Quincy House concentrating in Environmental Engineering with a secondary in Government. Outside of BPLA, he serves as the Advocacy Director of Harvard Habitat for Humanity and as a student liaison in the Institute of Politics’ Fellows & Study Groups program. In the past, Eric has interned with the Office of U.S. Senator Cory Booker, the Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy, and the Developer Operations Policy Team at Facebook. Eric's interests lie at the juncture of technology and policy, and he hopes to gain a career in the law that allows him to litigate issues at this point of intersection.
VICE PRESIDENT: Priscilla Samey
Priscilla is the 2019-20 Vice President of Harvard BPLA. Priscilla is a junior in Leverett House, pursuing a degree in Social Studies with a secondary in Global Health and Health Policy. She is from Minneapolis, MN and outside of BPLA is heavily involved in the Kuumba Singers, the oldest black organization on Harvard's campus, as their Publicity Director, and in the Institute of Politics where her focus is in the Politics of Race and Ethnicity, especially its intersection with health disparities. This past summer, Priscilla interned with a Senator in her home state, helping to motivate disenfranchised communities to vote. After college, she plans to get a JD-MBA and alleviate the administrative burdens on low income people and people of color who hope to start businesses or advocate for their legal rights in a system, she believes, was not built with them in mind.
Vice President of External Affairs: Ilham Ali
Ilham is the 2019-20 Vice President of External Affairs of Harvard BPLA. She is a junior in Currier House from Khartoum, Sudan. She is studying History and Science with a secondary concentration in Government. Ilham is currently the Political Action Chair in the Harvard African Students Association, sophomore representative in the Currier House Committee and is a member of the Human Rights Working Group. She also works as a reshelving assistant and trainer in Widener Library. Ilham is passionate about constitutional reform in Sudan and international human rights law. In her free time, Ilham likes to write and curate music playlists.
DIRECTOR OF Finance: Makeila Jamison
Makeila (she/her/hers) is the 2019-20 Director of Finance of Harvard BPLA. She is a junior in Cabot House, originally from Queens, NYC and concentrates in Social Studies and African American Studies. In addition to BPLA, Makeila has been an active member of the Women’s Club Basketball team since freshman year, becoming co-captain her sophomore year. She also writes for Harvard College Law Review, tutors in Stat 104, and works at both The Harvard Shop and the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning. Makeila has spent the past two Summers working in public service: in 2018 she worked for a State Assemblymember in the Bronx Michael Blake and this past summer of 2019 worked at Rockaway Youth Task Force, a youth-led nonprofit fighting for social justice on the Rockaway peninsula. In the future, Makeila hopes to attend law school and work in both public service and legal professions.
DIRECTOR OF Communications: Mahalia Mathelier
Mahalia is the 2019-20 Director of Communications of Harvard BPLA. She is a junior from East Meadow, NY, currently living in Quincy House. She is pursuing a degree in Government and a secondary in Economics. Outside of BPLA, Mahalia spends time working with the Small Claims Advisory Service, where she is an active member in the Legal Research Committee. She is also acting Operations Chair of Quincy House, and enjoys spending time planning house events and meeting other Penguins. She is also a member of the Harvard College Debating Union. During summer 2018, Mahalia enjoyed studying with Harvard Summer School in Venice, Italy. In the future, she is interesting seeing where a legal degree can take her, and hopes to use it to help juveniles who have been caught in the system.
DIRECTOR OF Partnerships: Joshua Walton
Joshua is the 2019-20 Director of Partnerships for Harvard BPLA. He is a junior from Union, MS, currently living in Quincy House. He is concentrating in Government and African American Studies. Joshua currently serves in leadership as a mentor and Ministry Team Leader in Harvard College Faith and Action. He also volunteers as a supervisor at Y2Y Homeless Shelter and teaches Sunday School at Memorial Church. He worked as a Congressional intern in the Summer of 2019 for Rep. Trent Kelly (MS-01). He also worked as an intern for the Roosevelt Group, a Defense-Industry lobbying and consulting firm. Joshua’s interests lie at the center of law and politics. He hopes to go back home and open up his own lobbying firm back in Mississippi, and eventually get involved in Mississippi politics.
DIRECTOR OF FUNDRAISING: JAMES FITZ-HENLEY
James is the 2019-20 Director of Fundraising of Harvard BPLA. Originally from Durham, NC, he is a sophomore living in Currier House. James will concentrate in Social Studies and pursue a secondary in Economics or Statistics. Outside of BPLA, James is a passionate member of the Harvard Mock Trial Association, having served as B Team Captain his freshmen year and serving now as a Director of Seminars. Additionally, he volunteers with the Small Claims Advisory Service and the Franklin After-School Enrichment Program in Dorchester. James spent the summer of 2019 in New York as a Freshman Summer Business Analyst at McKinsey & Company. He is excited to spend the remainder of his education exploring how he can use a JD to make the greatest impact for the most people possible.
DIRECTOR OF Internal Affairs: Samantha Gamble
Samantha (she/her/hers) is the 2019-20 Director of Internal Affairs of Harvard BPLA. She is a junior in Quincy House from the Washington DC area. She is studying Social Studies and African-American Studies with a secondary in Educational Studies. In addition to BPLA, Samantha is also one of the Co-Directors for the Harvard Undergraduate Legal Committee and one of the Diversity Peer Educators for the Office of Diversity Education and Support. She also works as a Student Circulatory Assistant at the Harvard Kennedy School library. In the past summers, Samantha has interned with legal non-profit Advancement Project, mentored high school students with the Summer Urban Program, and conducted research with the Radcliffe Institute. In her free time, Samantha likes to write creative fiction and consume excessive amounts of coffee.
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