Debby Freedman is the Executive Director of Community Legal Services of Philadelphia (CLS), the largest public interest law firm in Pennsylvania. Ms. Freedman received a B.A. with High Honors from the University of Michigan and she is a graduate of Yale Law School.
As Executive Director, Ms. Freedman oversees CLS’s advocacy, fundraising and management team and is a leader in the fight for equal justice in Philadelphia. Under her leadership, CLS helps over 10,000 low income Philadelphians a year with individual cases and many thousands more through systematic advocacy and litigation.
Ms. Freedman has held several positions at CLS, including Deputy Director, Managing Attorney of CLS’s North Philadelphia office and Managing Attorney of CLS’ Family Advocacy Unit. In these management roles, Ms. Freedman’s work centered on improving CLS’s supervision and evaluation systems, team building, resource development, technology, implementing new practice tools, staff training and compliance.
Prior to positions in management, Ms. Freedman was a staff attorney and supervising attorney in the public benefits unit where her work focused on medical assistance, food stamps and disability law. In these roles, Ms. Freedman represented clients in state and federal court, as well as a wide variety of administrative forums, including in appellate and class action litigation.
Ms. Freedman currently serves on the Executive Committee of Yale Law School, the Philadelphia Bar Association’s Civil Gideon and Membership Task Forces and on the Boards of the Community Justice Project and Society Hill Synagogue. She is a volunteer with Living Beyond Breast Cancer.