Sponsoring initiatives to advance social justice 

By Angela Hilt, Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer 

Over the last decade, Clorox has supported the nonprofit Equal Justice Works as it seeks to advance equal justice by promoting a lifelong commitment to public service in the legal community. One of the ways we’ve done that is by funding 12 EJW fellowships through The Clorox Company Foundation. It’s been an impactful and engaging partnership over the years with these fellows, who are recent law school graduates. Through our support, our EJW fellows are making a difference in our communities, and our Clorox teammates have the opportunity to engage with them on their very important work. Additionally, I’ve been able to contribute my time and support by serving on EJW’s board of counselors.  

Building on the work of past fellows who have helped advance social justice in areas such as housing, the environment, employment and mental health access, we’re supporting two new fellows from EJW’s class of 2024. Jocelyn Gomez, co-sponsored with law firm Morgan Lewis & Bockius, will be a fellow at the Immigration Institute of the Bay Area, while Sam Lawrence, co-sponsored with law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, will be a fellow at The Just Sentencing Project at Duke Law’s Wilson Center. 

Here’s some background on the projects they’ll begin in September, serving on the front lines of the battle for equal rights under the law in our Bay Area and Durham communities:  

  • Immigrant human trafficking

Jocelyn Gomez, a recent graduate of University of California, Berkeley School of Law, will focus on advocating for immigrant survivors of human trafficking in the Bay Area of Northern California. Her work will involve direct legal representation, community outreach and coalition building to help empower survivors.  

  • Legal rights for incarcerated children:  

Sam Lawrence, a recent graduate of Duke University School of Law, will represent children incarcerated in North Carolina’s juvenile prisons by creating holistic re-entry plans for them and advocating for their timely release. 

What inspired our fellows to do this work: 

As a daughter of immigrant farmworkers — a community vulnerable to trafficking and abuse — Jocelyn is committed to helping combat the coercion and abuse targeted at immigrant populations. She is hopeful that this fellowship will empower survivors to safely pursue justice and support without the fear of being wrongly deported or detained by immigration officials.  

“Working with the Immigration Institute of the Bay Area opened my eyes to the impact an accessible pathway to citizenship can make in the lives of immigrant survivors. I hope to support survivors in regaining their autonomy and seeking justice.” 

Jocelyn Gomez

Before law school, Sam worked at a holistic youth defenders office in New Orleans and as a therapist in North Carolina. The children and families he worked with, along with the lawyers and social workers who zealously advocated on their behalf, inspired him to become a lawyer for incarcerated children. 

“As an educator, youth advocate and licensed clinical social worker, I have had the honor of getting to know hundreds of children who were court-involved. Their resilience, creativity, kindness and complexity inspire me to be a lifelong advocate for children.”  

Sam Lawrence

We’re looking forward to seeing all that Jocelyn and Sam will be able to accomplish in the next year. And we’re proud of the important work of our fellows, past and present, and the difference we’re making in our communities through our longstanding EJW partnership.