Skip to comments.Lawyer Swaps Big Salary Plus Perks to Represent Detainees
Posted on 01/11/2006 5:23:20 PM PST by NJRighty
Jobs in human-rights litigation in the U.S. aren't plentiful, and anyone seeing Tina Monshipour Foster in 2004 might have said she was a long shot to get one - or take one.
She was a fourth-year associate in the midtown Manhattan office of Clifford Chance LLP, one of the world's largest law firms, with annual pay of more than $200,000. She had a secretary, word processing staff and a car and driver at her disposal when she worked late. At night, she went home to a loft apartment overlooking the East River.
But at age 29, Ms. Foster gave it up to become one of three attorneys working at the Center for Constitutional Rights on behalf of prisoners at the U.S. Naval Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. She earns less than $70,000 annually and works out of offices in an older building in the Soho area of New York City. Studded with gum, the rug in her office is "disgusting," she says.
Her position as counsel for the Guantánamo Global Justice Initiative has her coordinating more than 400 individual cases and a "John Doe" case on behalf of unnamed prisoners, most of which are being handled pro bono by law firms nationwide. The prisoners, who have been held without being charged since after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, are challenging their detention.
"There are almost no human-rights litigation jobs," says Mr. Ratner. "And the important issues now are the post 9/11 detention and torture issues, so this is possibly the best job you can get in America."
(Excerpt) Read more at careerjournal.com ...
"...this is possibly the best job you can get in America." You POS.
Fortunately, useful idiots are not hard to come by.
A lot of people in NYS would be envious of that $70K she's making.
It sounds to me like Tina might be looking for a tall, dark Middle Eastern man who will treat her right even though she'll have to wear a burka.
Rest assured, fellow FReepers, that when I graduate from law school, I intend to go straight to a cushy office in a big-time corporate defense firm.
Unfortunately, there are a lot of Americans who would do the job for free.
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Lynne Stewart wannabe
You've got a point there. Pretty sad, isn't it?
Another reason why we need - loser pays.
Sounds as if her career trajectory may have flat-lined - for a variety of reasons anyone as obtuse as she is not likely to last more than 3 or 4 years in any big city firm. Remember - big firms never fire an associate - particularly a female associate - they simply cease assigning any new work to the flat liner. At some point the associate, now twisting slowly in the wind, is reduced to begging partners for work and, that not forthcoming, leaves.
Believe me, she is not doing this out of the goodness of her heart. There will be something in it for her.
Rachel Corrie with a law degree.
Cinsidering these terrorists are not covered by convention, and we could have employed the catch,kill,release, listen for thud,(when body hits turf). Could it be that one reason for the Gitmo slammer is to see what saps will strive to go and slobber over them. Gather names, info, make note to NOT consider said sap for a Judgeship in futuredom. Hmmm Maybe
WTF? Right off the bat, this is crap to say the least. Is the ACLU restricting hiring or something? How much does anyone want to bet that Tina Monshipour Foster will be coming out with a lucrative book deal that will make her "sacrifice" of giving up her high salary, secretary, word processing staff and private car and driver look like peanuts?
I've seen her type before. I'd bet she's doing this to get a law professorship.
Cute trick, and it WILL work, I've seen it done before.
3 years from now she'll be a full professor in some fancy law school.
Alright people, lets quite down and think this one through.
Lets assume that the person in question, although a lawyer, can think things through.
What better qualification in 10 to 15 years than being the first lawyer to defend an accused terrorist from the evil Republican machine of the right-wing hateful President G.W.Bush?
If the democrats ever get back into power this is the golden key to a major job in the new administration.
If the Republicans stay in power there is still the golden ring working for the UN or some other international non-government agency.
Plus, what liberal think tank would pass up hiring her?
From now until the last legal act (as in play) occurs at Gitmo she has free national and international publicity. This free advertisement is well beyond her current or future ability to pay for it out of her own pocket.
Besides, she will not go hungry, un-clothed, or homeless; there will always be some high powered liberal to pick up her tabs.
Who knows, she might even get an invite to spend time with (insert you least favorite liberals name here) !
All in all I think this was a very smart career move on her part. But then, isnt that what everything is about - smart career moves?
Her name looks middle eastern to me. And I'm not sure her salary will represent her entire income.
If not on a partnership trajectory after four years, you're right. However, some firms do let associates go--they call them in after a couple of years and let them know they are not on a partnership track and that they may want to look elsewhere.