A native of Lafayette, Louisiana, Leila Arefi-Pour has always had a love for the great Pacific Northwest. Leila graduated in 2009 from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette with a degree in Political Science and a minor in Criminal Justice. Leila is also a 2018 graduate of Southern University Law Center (SULC) in Baton Rouge, LA and a 2019 graduate of Lewis & Clark Law School’s LLM in Animal Law Program.
During her second year in law school, Leila founded SULC’s Student Animal Legal Defense Fund Chapter and served as its president until her graduation. During her 2L summer, Leila worked with Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) on its Shark Fin Campaign for the protection of sharks and an end to the harvesting and use of shark fins. Leila again worked with AWI as a Wildlife Legislation and Policy Intern where she drafted a petition to end the culling of white tail deer as well as drafted a treaty for animal protection. Further, Leila worked with For All Animals on its “Attorney at Paw” program. Additionally, during law school, Leila was fortunate enough to travel to Portland, OR to take part in Lewis & Clark’s Summer Animal Law Program, where she learned about animals in the jurisprudence and the ethics of animal testing.
Upon her graduation from SULC, Leila was accepted into the Animal Law LLM Program at Lewis & Clark Law School. Aside from her animal law classes, Leila worked with New England Anti-vivisection Society (NEAVS) as a Legislation and Policy Intern, where she worked to end animal testing in laboratories. In addition to her classes and work with NEAVS, Leila also served as a Research Assistant for the Animal Law Clinic Director, conducting aquatic animal law research that would later be used for an aquatic animal law book, class, and other materials.
Leila passed the July 2019 Washington State Bar exam and is currently an associate attorney at Vancouver Defenders in Vancouver, WA, where she is a criminal defense attorney serving as a public defender. She also takes privately retained animal law cases.
Leila was recently elected as the Secretary of the Animal Law Section for the Washington State Bar and will begin her role in October 2020. Leila is serving as the lead chair for the Washington State Bar - Animal Law Section CLE and will be giving the legislative update.
In addition to her involvement in the Animal Section, Leila also serves as the treasurer for the Young Lawyers Section of the Clark County Bar, is a member Clark County Bar, and American Inns of Court.