CHICAGO, Oct. 4, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The John Marshall Law School in Chicago has hired Renee C. Hatcher as the new director of the school's Business Enterprise Law Clinic. Hatcher, currently a clinical teaching faculty fellow at the University of Baltimore School of Law, will replace Michael Schlesinger who is retiring at year-end.

Hatcher has focused her career on public interest and social justice, creating social change through community development and human rights advocacy work. "It's a privilege to do this kind of work because you are supporting the vision of a community," she says. "It feels very different when you are working with a client towards a goal versus representing someone in litigation when the harm has already been done."
Anthony Niedwiecki, associate dean for Academic Affairs at John Marshall, welcomed Hatcher.  "We are very excited to have Renee as the new director of BELAW.  She has the vision, energy and commitment to social justice that will benefit our students and the greater Chicago area.  Her connections in the city will also allow us to expand our efforts at helping small businesses in underserved areas of Chicago."
At John Marshall, Hatcher wants to expand the scope of the Business Enterprise Law Clinic beyond representing individual clients and into advocacy. "There are so many opportunities in the city of Chicago right now. It is a great time to be a part of the push for small businesses and entrepreneurial opportunities. And it's also a great time to think about advocacy work in the south and west sides of Chicago."
Her vision for the clinic also includes getting students involved in building sustainable economies in currently underserved areas of the city. "There is a lot of overlap and opportunity with community development and entrepreneurship." Hatcher's scholarship currently focuses on sustainable and solidarity economies and other legal strategies to build power and create equitable development practices in communities of color.
Hatcher previously was a post-doctoral fellow at the Institute for Urban Policy Research and Analysis at the University of Texas-Austin, a staff attorney at the Chicago Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law and the inaugural Helaine Barnett Fellow at the Legal Services Corporation in Washington, DC.
A native of Gary, Indiana, Hatcher graduated from New York University School of Law in 2011.  

Miller McDonald
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