Kate Shanahan

Glenwood Springs High School

Class Of 2020

Prepared Clients Through Witness Preparation Sessions Involving Direct & Cross Examinations

Worked Directly With Crime-Scene Recreation & Jury Selection Experts To Assist In My Clients Case

Advocated For My Client On Capitol Hill To Congressmen, Senators & Congressional Officials


Gender Disparity

Whistleblower Case

Gender Disparity Within The National Park Service

Advocacy on Capitol Hill

Outcome

Gender disparity, discrimination, and sexual harassment have been found to be widespread throughout the National Park Service (NPS). Thirty-nine percent of NPS employees say they have experienced harassment or discrimination on the job.

Although women who work for NPS have made clear they have the ability to perform with the same skill and success in every endeavor engaged in by males in their position, the issue of gender discrimination still holds many back. The NPS is failing to provide a fair and inclusive environments for all employees across the country.

We met with Senators, Representatives and congressional staff members to advocate for our client. We explained to congressional members how our client has been treated unfairly and has been subject to employment discrimination and reprisal in her attempts to become the Regional Chief Ranger of the National Capitol Region.

Our client is still fighting against discrimination. This case is currently seeking further legal action and is likely to proceed to litigation sometime within the next year.

In total, three Senators, eight Representatives, and eighteen congressional staff members spoke directly with students about the case our client was bringing against the National Parks Service as we demanded fair treatment for her and all people working in NPS.


Case Preparation

And Advocacy

For a client suing the National Park Service for Gender Disparity.

Review Case Work

Case Review

We worked with lead attorney David P. Weber to examine complex case documents, explore legal precedent, conduct thorough legal research, and advocate for our client on Capitol Hill.

We worked tirelessly to prepare documents and advocacy strategies for our client, one of the first Chief Rangers in NPS history.

As a team, we gained valuable real-life experience as we worked on what could be a historic case for gender equality.

As interns of Goodwin Weber PLLC, we focused our efforts on a gender discrimination case that was brought forth by a high ranking official from the National Park Service.

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Case Research & Preparation

After this, we worked with David P. Weber and his team to learn how to create a meaningful direct and cross-examination.

Throughout the week, we wrote and edited our direct and cross-examinations and learned techniques to help in our presentation.

Through this process, we learned about courtroom procedure as well as the various layers of complexity encompassed in conducting a direct examination and holding a witness credible, as well as protecting a witness during cross-examination​.

We met with our client in order to hear her side of the story. When meeting with her and her husband, we learned about our client’s personal background and employment history within the NPS, as well as the perceived discrimination within the NPS itself.

The client then went on to describe how the discrimination occurred and the specific factors of discrimination she faced after the event. She went into detail on how workplace discrimination is currently impacting her life, and how she hopes her case will make a difference and change government policies.

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Case Advocacy On Capitol Hill

Throughout the internship, we were trained in effective ways to advocate on Capitol Hill and prepared for our congressional audience by developing solid briefing materials. The focus of the materials and the overall messaging of the meeting was on improving working conditions for women in the National Parks Service and advocating on behalf of the client.

Legal research and evidence of discrimination that our client has endured were presented to Congressional Representatives and Senators. We highlighted the facts of our client’s case and advocated for possible solutions to the broader problem of gender discrimination that NPS is experiencing around the country.

Meeting with multiple members of Congress allowed us to demonstrate the importance of our client’s case. For many, it helped show them that the issue of gender discrimination in the NPS is an issue that their constituents care about. By advocating for our client, we fulfilled a civic duty and showed our representatives that this is an issue which needs to be addressed within the NPS and the country.

Being able to advocate and experience Capitol Hill on the inside with such access offered a new perspective for everyone on the team. Most people do not get to meet with representatives in this way.

The most valuable lesson we learned through advocating for our client and meeting representatives was how much we can accomplish together.

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Oral Argument Preparation at the American University Law Center

At the end of the week, we presented our research findings to the client at the American University Washington College of Law Moot Court Room. The team had prepared a direct and cross-examination to perform on the client to help her prepare for trial.

The presentations were set up to resemble an appellate court system. Our team sat at the counsel table and each of us presented our arguments at the podium. Our team was given thirty minutes to present arguments and ten minutes to receive feedback from David P. Weber.

We played a crucial part in the legal strategy of our client's case. In future legal action, the arguments made during this presentation will be considered as they strongly pertain to the client's case.

After the presentation of arguments, the client stated that she felt relieved to have such thorough research and advocacy completed on her behalf.

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Is

The Case

Transforming

The Nation.

Our Lives.

This case has the potential to establish legal precedent in favor of women who face gender discrimination in the workplace, whether it is within the NPS or in another field.

If our case is successful, this case will be used to ensure equal payment, equal evaluations and equal promotions for millions of women who work within the United States government. Changing forever how women may advance in our society.



The National Park Service

Case Updates

The day after the Advanced Law and Trail Summit students met with congressional officials on their client's behalf, the Deputy Director of the National Park Service sent out an anti-harassment statement and anti-gender discrimination statement to all National Park Service employees.

This was the first time in the history that National Park Service sent out an email of this nature.

National Park Service

The Program

My Client

Client Update

With this case proceeding to further legal action, the client is focusing on her current position as a director within the National Park Service.

The client continues to advocate for other female National Park Service employees working to ensure they are treated fairly and have a support network within the organization

The Program

Case Updates

Due to the success of the internship summit, program sponsors will be expanding the program to fund whistleblower cases that affect the national discourse.

Leading high school students from across the United States will be able to work directly on cases that impact the nation for years to come.



Goodwin Weber PLLC Internship

Our team interned for Goodwin Weber PLLC. We worked with top attorney David P. Weber and focused our efforts on a Gender Disparity case brought against the National Park Service.

As a team, we read through many complex case documents and used WestLaw to research legal precedent for our client.

Our team meet with several key congressional officials to gain support for our client and fight against gender disparity and discrimination. We created briefings for congress members and staff so they could clearly grasp the unfair treatment our client is facing.

Since this case is ongoing, we have to opportunity to return next summer to continue our internship with Goodwin Weber PLLC and help our client find justice with her fight against gender discrimination.

In the final presentation, we presented Goodwin Weber PLLC with three cases that would strategically prove legal precedent in our client’s favor.

Internship Program Highlights

Click On The Links Below

To See Each Highlight

Crime Scene Investigation Lab

Jury Selection Expert

Congressional Advocacy

Law Firm Internship

Legal Experts

CLIENT ADVOCACY

Twenty-four hours after we meet with members of Congress on our client's behalf the Deputy Director of the National Park Service sent out an anti-harassment statement and anti-gender discrimination statement to all National Parks Service employees.

Direct advocacy on Capitol Hill is one of the most powerful and advantageous ways to advance and impact legislative policy priorities.

As interns of Goodwin Weber PLLC, we became immersed in the facts of our client’s gender discrimination case against the National Parks Service.

By the end of our internship, we were uniquely qualified to communicate with Congress about effective policies to combat gender discrimination in the workplace.

We pushed lawmakers to publicly support our client and left them with all the tools and information necessary for them to create an informed opinion.

Legal Expert Panel

William R. (Billy) Martin is a partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Barnes & Thornburg. As one of the top trial attorneys in the U.S., Billy represents corporations and leading individuals in politics, sports and entertainment, and he has tried more than 150 jury trials across the country. He is a member of the firm's Litigation Department and the White Collar Practice Group.

William R. (Billy) Martin

William R. (Billy) Martin

William R. (Billy) Martin

Partner at Barnes & Thornburg

Daniel Seikaly

Former General Inspector For the CIA

Dan Pond

Public Defender Service

Staff Attorney

Assistant U.S. Attorney for Washington DC

Daniel Seikaly was the associate deputy attorney general in the executive office for national security and an assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia. Before the DOJ he was an assistant inspector general for investigations for the CIA. Daniel was also a law professor at the University of Michigan School of Law and Antioch Law School.

Daniel Seikaly

Daniel Seikaly

Dan Pond is a staff attorney at the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia. Dan works in the Prisoners & Re-Entry Legal Services Program, where he specializes in parole release hearings, termination hearings for DC parole, Bureau of Prisons classification, designation and sentence computation, and sentencing advocacy in DC

Dan Pond

Dan Pond

Jury Selection

From An Expert In The Field

Dr. Jeffery Frederick, leading expert in jury selection, visited and discussed with us how juries are selected and what role they play in determining the outcome of a case. We learned how to pick jury members during jury selection that will help us have a favorable outcome for the case.

We learned about topics such as the psychology of jury selection, the importance of body language, and research techniques for jury selection. We learned how to apply this to our case and cases we may have in the future. We now have a better understanding of the jury selection process and how to pick jurors.

Crime Scene Investigation Lab

We met with Thomas P. Mauriello from the University of Maryland at University Park at his lab to learn about crime scene investigation and recreation.

We learned about the different facets of crime scene investigation such as documentation, evidence collection, and lab tests. We were introduced to different types of technology that assist crime scene analysts in gathering pertinent information.

We learned the importance of having credible expert witnesses that can testify to the evidence from the crime scenes.

Learning about the crime scene investigation and analysis processes gave our team a deeper understanding of law enforcement and the legal system.

David P. Weber also talked to use about how crime scene analysis is very important in the legal field, especially for criminal cases. We learned how the evidence can be used in court.