Social Justice Legal Foundation Taps Deputy Attorney General for Civil Rights as Executive Director

The Social Justice Legal Foundation is pleased to announce that Shubhra Shivpuri will join the organization as its inaugural executive director. Ms. Shivpuri, a recipient of the California Lawyer of the Year (CLAY) award, most recently served as a deputy attorney general for the Civil Rights Enforcement Section at the California Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General.

“Fighting to protect and ensure civil rights is a privilege. The opportunity to lead such a fight at a first-of-its-kind organization like Social Justice Legal Foundation, with the backing of private sector and public interest pioneers, and alongside the best and brightest, is an honor,” explained Ms. Shivpuri. “I look forward to tackling the challenges ahead with passion and humility.”

Ms. Shivpuri has spent the majority of her career in public service, at both the state and federal levels. As a deputy attorney general, she was involved in some of the office’s most consequential matters, including litigation relating to the defense of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. She also led a team tasked with a first-of-its-kind evaluation of the conditions of confinement at all federal immigration detention facilities in the state of California, for which she received the Attorney General’s Award for Excellence. In addition, Ms. Shivpuri led an assessment of the Sacramento Police Department in the wake of the fatal police shooting of Stephon Clark, and has been recognized for her expertise in law enforcement practices, government oversight and compliance.

“Shubhra’s demonstrated relentless drive to achieve social justice and equity is a perfect fit with the mission of the Foundation,” said founding board member John Hueston. “She brings tested leadership abilities and a creative vision for curating and pursuing groundbreaking trial work to advance justice.”

Ms. Shivpuri, who will be joined by two additional attorneys, will oversee the inaugural class of Hueston Hennigan Fellows from each of the five collaborating schools: Emily Barber (Columbia Law School), Alyssa Martinez (Stanford Law School), Emily Olivencia-Audet (UCLA School of Law), Amelia Piazza (Northwestern Pritzker School of Law) and Hannah Schoen (Yale Law School). Each of the incoming fellows is a scholar who has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to public interest legal work.

Ms. Shivpuri earned a Juris Doctor from Stanford Law School, where she also served as the submissions editor for the Stanford Journal of International Law. She graduated with a B.S., summa cum laude, from Northwestern University.

For more information on the Social Justice Legal Foundation, visit