Coronavirus Information and Update: Spring 2021 Plans

June 27, 2019

Destini Martinez

Criminal Justice Reform Clinic
Portland, Oregon

This summer, I had the opportunity to work at the Criminal Justice Reform Clinic as a 1L Law Clerk. Working for the clinic allowed me to focus on a main interest of mine: Prisoner Rights and Advocacy. 


           One of my main projects was working on a clemency petition for an incarcerated individual. This individual has made major transformation while incarcerated, and has become a truly remarkable human-being. I had the great pleasure of getting to meet with him and document that transformation in order to petition the governor for his release. If released, he will be an amazing asset to the community. This has been an amazing opportunity for me, because I learned the clemency process inside and out. Writing a clemency petition is heartfelt and meaningful work, and the process has made me a more well-rounded and insightful person and future lawyer. I was also able to assist with other projects advocating for people in prison including a study on women in prison. 


This externship gave me an excellent start to my legal career, because it gave me practical experience interviewing and advocating for clients. I was also able to better my research and writing skills in a practical setting. I am very grateful to have received the PILP stipend and to be involved with PILP. The funding PILP provided for my public interest work over the summer made it possible for me to work for a public interest organization that aligns with my career goals while making a significant positive impact on the lives of incarcerated individuals.