After 15 years of hard work, the CLDC is being recognized as a national leader for activist defense and legal support. With that support, we now have the opportunity to expand our capacity and grow our organization to serve even more movement activists! We are very excited to share our experienced, movement oriented new team members with you: Debbie Garza Troutz is our new office manager, Katherine Gorell is our Communications & Grants director, and Marianne Dugan has accepted our offer to be a Senior Staff Attorney and will focus her work on civil rights, SLAPP defense, and public records litigation. We are thrilled with our new triad of phenomenal women!

Meet the newest members of the CLDC team:

Debbie Garza Troutz, Office Manager
Debbie has over 15 years experience in office management and accounting. She has a recent background in non-profit work and domestic violence advocacy. She is also an artist, rockhound and enthusiastically loves cats and edible plants!

Katherine Gorell, Grants & Communications Director
Katherine has been a proud member of the nonprofit sector since 2002 and is a longtime movement activist. Throughout her career she has focused on raising funds and garnering publicity for organizations that achieve significant social impact. Katherine earned her BA in English at Michigan State University and studied marketing at Florida International University, where she earned her MBA.

Marianne Dugan, Senior Staff Attorney
Marianne graduated from the University of Oregon Law School in 1993, with certificates in Environmental Law and Ocean and Coastal Law. She also holds a master’s degree in environmental studies. From 1993 to 1999 Ms. Dugan worked for the Western Environmental Law Center as its first staff attorney and then as associate director—in fact—Lauren Regan was one of her law clerks while in law school! She then entered private practice and has handled environmental, civil rights, and other civil legal matters. Ms. Dugan is the chair of the Sierra Club’s national litigation committee, and has served on the Oregon State Bar Civil Rights Executive Committee. She serves on the board of Access the Law, and has served on the boards of Friends of Land-Air-Water, Western Lands Project, and Portia Project. She also served on the Board of the Civil Liberties Defense Center from 2004 until 2013, including service as President and as Secretary at various times. For three years running Ms. Dugan was listed in the Oregon edition of “Superlawyers” in the field of environmental law, and she coaches the University of Oregon’s environmental moot court team at the annual national competition. Marianne has been Lauren’s co-counsel on several federal civil rights cases over the years as well. They make a powerful team and are excited to partner for many years to come!

Erin Grady is moving on to other projects

And although we have 3 reasons to celebrate, we also are saying goodbye to our friend and organizer, Erin Grady. Erin deepened our connections to the communities and movements we serve with kindness and dedication.  Erin developed our new online training program for people who want to become CLDC Know Your Rights for Immigrants trainers.  As a bilingual trainer herself, she helps teach people from around the country to give our training in Spanish and English—in fact her final round of graduations are happening right now in her final week of work.  She also ran our Next Generation Climate Justice Action Camp which helped provide climate organizing skills to 14-17 year old activists.  Erin has amazing energy and grace in working with activist youth and she really shined in this role. We truly appreciate everything you contributed to the CLDC Erin, and we know we will continue to work with you for many years to come!

Join the CLDC team!

We are still looking for one additional activist defense attorney to fill out our team.  If you have movement background and 5 years of criminal defense experience, and are willing to work on the frontlines—please apply for the job. More details are on our website at: