Rebecca E. Woodman has extensive experience, both in death penalty litigation and in teaching death penalty-related subjects. Before joining the Clinic as Executive Director, Ms. Woodman was a capital appellate defender in Kansas for fifteen years. She was counsel of record in the death penalty case of Kansas v. Marsh, 548 U.S. 163 (2006), and twice argued the case in the Supreme Court of the United States. Ms. Woodman has been an adjunct and visiting professor at Washburn Law School, teaching courses on the death penalty and wrongful convictions, and supervising student interns in the criminal defense clinic. In addition, she has authored several articles focusing on the death penalty and other criminal law issues.
Joseph W. Luby has served as an attorney with the Death Penalty Litigation Clinic, formerly the Public Interest Litigation Clinic, since 2001. After graduating from Yale Law School in 1998, he served as a judicial law clerk for Judge John R. Gibson of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, and then for Judge Howard F. Sachs of the United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri. Mr. Luby has represented death-sentenced prisoners in all manner of post-trial proceedings, with an emphasis on federal habeas corpus remedies. In 2009 he was awarded the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers‚ Atticus Finch Award for the pursuit of justice and the defense of unpopular causes.
Jessica Sutton is a staff attorney at the Death Penalty Litigation Clinic, which she joined in 2010. Jessica is a 2009 graduate of Boston University School of Law, where she was awarded the Warren S. Gilford Law and Humanity Prize as well as the Clinical Legal Education Association Outstanding Student Award for her work in the criminal defense clinic. During law school, Jessica co-founded a community-based legal clinic serving transgender people in Boston, including those who are incarcerated. Jessica also interned at the New York Civil Liberties Union and volunteered for the Center for Death Penalty Litigation. After law school, Jessica clerked for the Honorable Helen Toor at Chittenden Superior Court in Burlington, Vermont. She currently serves on the Board of Equal Justice Works.
Sonali Shahi is a staff attorney at the Death Penalty Litigation Clinic, which she joined in 2012. Ms. Shahi is a 2011 graduate of Cornell Law School, where she worked in the Capital Appellate Clinic, assisting in the representation of a prisoner on South Carolina’s death row. She also worked in the Child Advocacy Clinic and the Criminal Defense Trial Clinic. She was a 2010 summer law clerk at the Federal Defenders of New York and worked as a legal intern at Prisoners’ Legal Services of Ithaca in the summer of 2009. In her third year of law school, she was awarded the Freeman Award for Civil-Human Rights, awarded to those who have made the greatest contributions to civil and/or human rights during their law school career.
Courtney Zeno is the Paralegal and Office Manager for the Death Penalty Litigation Clinic, which she joined in 2013. Courtney is a graduate from Edmonds Community College in Lynnwood, Washington, with a degree in Paralegal Studies. (Contact DPLC for CV).