October 2019 Volunteer Of The Month: Nora Wolf

Wolf, N..jpg

Volunteer Lawyers for Justice (VLJ) is honored to recognize Nora Wolf as our October Volunteer of the Month. Nora has volunteered with VLJ for three years, becoming one of the most committed pro bono attorneys for VLJ’s Human Trafficking Victims’ Legal Assistance Program. She has successfully resolved outstanding warrants, dismissed municipal matters, and petitioned for vacatur and expungement relief for survivors under NJ’s Human Trafficking Prevention, Protection, and Treatment Act.

Nora is an associate in the products liability group at Gibbons, PC.  Through Gibbons’ pro bono outreach efforts, Nora attended a VLJ training on human trafficking legal services and immediately seized the opportunity to handle cases. As a young attorney, Nora is keenly aware of the benefits of pro bono. “Pro bono gives you the opportunity to advocate for someone who has no voice and the opportunity to run your own case. Standing on your own feet, making your own arguments, and writing your own briefs is invaluable experience for young attorneys,” she said.

When asked what she enjoys most about volunteering, Nora quickly answered, “The clients. With all pro bono work, you feel like you’re doing something to really help somebody, but this particular program and the transformative effect it has on the clients’ lives is critical. So many of our clients have been voiceless for all of their lives and have been through horrible things. It’s an incredible opportunity to help give them back their lives.”

The clients are likewise grateful to have Nora as their advocate, as she is a compassionate and empathic listener. While reflecting on a particular client, Nora was struck by how young the client was when she was first trafficked.  “In a lot of ways, the institutions that were set up to protect her when she was still a child failed her. It’s been really rewarding to work with her because it feels like, for the first time, the system is helping her. And she’s expressed a lot of gratitude because it’s been a really long road.”

In addition to her work with VLJ, Nora is a long-standing volunteer with NJ SEEDS, a nonprofit that prepares motivated, high-achieving, low-income students for admission to private schools and colleges across the country.

VLJ is pleased to honor Nora Wolf as its Volunteer of the Month.