Throughout the years, Columbia Legal Services (CLS) has been fortunate to have a community of people with a passion to end poverty and serve justice. Our lawyers, advocacy staff, administrative team, and Board of Directors altogether bring a diversity of experiences, talents, and skills, which connect the program to the diverse communities we aim to serve.  

The CLS Board of Directors serves as a volunteer governing body. As a statewide nonprofit organization, the strength of the CLS Board draws from its range and depth of experience. Rural and urban perspectives are represented. Legal experiences include both civil and criminal lawyers. Professional expertise includes a variety of substantive issue areas, with skills in leadership, teaching, mentoring, and advocacy. Client representatives share their views as well through their invaluable insights. Through their varied community backgrounds, the CLS Board of Directors not only steward the mission of our program, providing operational oversight, but they also carry an important ambassadorial role to ensure that CLS connects with as many stakeholders and supporters who care about our work for justice.

Brenda Carlstrom has been a CLS Board member since 1997, when CLS emerged from the dramatic reorganization of statewide legal services. She is a member of the Hoquiam City Council, and is also involved in numerous boards, committees and activities relating to advancing the rights of people living with disabilities.

Jeffery C. Grant is a shareholder of Skellenger Bender law firm, where his practice includes civil and criminal cases in state and federal courts. In addition to CLS, Jeffrey’s leadership and community service includes Seattle University Board of Regents, Legal Committee of the ACLU-WA, American Board of Trial Advocates, William Dwyer Inn of Court, and an adjunct faculty of Seattle University School of Law.

Dolly N. Hunt is the Prosecuting Attorney for Pend Oreille County. Her work as a prosecutor also includes work in other rural parts of Washington, such as Lincoln County and Okanogan County. Dolly’s leadership experience also includes a 2008 WSBA Leadership Institute Fellowship, and service as a past member of that Advisory Board; WSBA Professionalism Committee, and Judicial Recommendation Committee.

Naomi Kim is the owner of NSK & Company, P.C, where she practices in the areas of immigration, business and real estate transactions. She has been involved as an active member of the Pierce County Volunteer Lawyers Program, and helped create the Multicultural Self-Sufficiency Movement pro bono legal clinic in Lakewood, Washington. Naomi’s leadership experience also includes a 2007 WSBA Leadership Institute Fellowship, and past Pro Bono Coordinator for the Korean American Bar Association.

Cynthia Martinez is the Prosecutor for the City of Yakima, and prior to that served as a deputy prosecutor in Pierce County. In addition to CLS, Cynthia has been an active supporter of legal aid and pro bono work in Yakima, including leadership and work with the Yakima County Volunteer Attorney Services.

Carmen Mireles is a longtime resident of the Yakima Valley, where she has been an active and informed bilingual/bicultural voice in the Latino community as a lay advocate against domestic violence and sexual harassment. She has worked with Amigas Unidas, a grassroots organization created by CLS, other statewide domestic violence and sexual assault resource centers, and Radio KDNA.

Brenda Morbauch lives in Skokomish, on the Skokomish Reservation. She is involved in many civic activities.

Michael Pontarolo is a partner with the law firm of Delay, Curran, Thompson, Pontarolo & Walker, where his practice includes workers compensation. Mike is a former member of the WSBA Board of Governors, past Vice President of the WSTLA, and adjunct faculty at Gonzaga University School of Law. He currently serves as a member of the WSBA Rules of Professional Conduct Committee, and Judicial Conduct Committee.

Rick Potter is a principal of the law firm Heurlin, Potter, Jahn, Leatham, Holtman & Stoker, P.S., where he has a variety of experience in litigation of complex matters. He has been a CLS Board member since 1996, at time when CLS was being created from the merger of three statewide legal aid organizations. He has been a longtime supporter of legal aid, having worked with different antipoverty programs, including service on the board of Legal Aid for Washington Fund.

Naria K. Santa Lucia is the Executive Director of the Washington State Opportunity Scholarship (WSOS), a public-private partnership helping to build the next generation of scientists, engineers, mathematicians, health care professionals in Washington state’s high-demand employment fields through scholarships and support for low- and middle-income college students in Washington state. Naria’s leadership experience includes serving as the Director of Legal Aid for Washington Fund; and Executive Director of the James B. Moran Center for Youth Advocacy, a youth law organization in Illinois. She currently serves on the Board of Washington Nonprofits.

David Savage is a managing principal with the law firm of Irwin, Myklebust, Savage & Brown, P.S., where he practices in the area of personal injury, product liability, and construction claims. He is a former President of the WSBA, served on WSBA Board of Governors and, and served for several years on the Advisory Board of the WSBA Leadership Institute.

Elizabeth Shannon has been involved with community service in a variety of ways, including volunteer work with the Legal Committee of Legal Voice.  She has also worked as a patent law clerk and software analyst.

Linda Strout is a retired Seattle attorney who has served on the CLS Board since 2002 and served as CLS Board President from 2011 to 2013.  She retired from the Port of Seattle after over twenty years’ service, including several years as its Deputy CEO and General Counsel.  Linda is a former King County Bar Association President and Seattle University Law Alumni Board President.

William Vesneski teaches at the University of Washington School of Social Work, and consultant with Luma Consulting, specializing in applied research and evaluation of philanthropies and nonprofits. He has worked with numerous nonprofits, and served in leadership positions including Director of Evaluations for the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, and the National Court Appointed Special Advocate’s Association.