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Mary Felder L’21

Mary comes to Penn Law to pursue a career fighting for just representation and advocating for police and prison reform. While studying Political Science and German at Northwestern University, she interned in Chicago for the office of the Cook County Public Defender, both in Domestic Violence court and in the Prostitution and Sex Trafficking Diversion Court. Mary also interned for the Presiding Judge of the Criminal Division in Cook County, where she researched the disparate impact of courts on individuals with mental illness as well as options for policy reform. While there, she watched the trial of Chicago police officer Dante Servin, who was not convicted for the murder of Rekia Boyd. After this trial, Mary decided to pursue post-graduate work in law enforcement reform. 


After college, Mary was a paralegal for Neufeld Scheck & Brustin, a civil rights law firm in Manhattan. There she worked on nationwide cases of wrongful conviction, police brutality, and official misconduct of prosecutors and jail employees. Mary is interested in continuing to work in civil rights litigation or as a public defender, and is interested in creative approaches to problem solving in criminal justice, specifically through diversion courts and bail reform. At Penn Law, she is a 1L representative on the board of the Equal Justice Foundation and a member of the Walk-in Legal Assistance Project. Mary is originally from Chapel Hill, NC. In her free time, she can be found cooking, doing crossword puzzles, and listening to musical theater while going on long walks and short runs around the city.