Maria Pulzetti is a Supervising Attorney in the Health and Independence Unit at Community Legal Services. Her practice includes direct representation of clients for food stamps, cash assistance, Medicaid, and Social Security, and systemic advocacy initiatives to expand and protect access to these essential public benefits. Maria believes civil rights lawyers have a sacred obligation to advocate for equal justice and dignity for those who face systemic discrimination and oppression. Maria formerly worked as an Assistant Federal Defender at the Federal Community Defender for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, handling capital habeas cases and federal criminal appeals. She was the founding executive director of the Moscow-based Russian Justice Initiative, which represents victims of human rights violations at the European Court of Human Rights. During college, she co-founded the Day of Silence, a student-led day of action against the silencing and erasure of LGBTQ people in schools. Maria received her J.D. from Yale Law School and her B.A. from the University of Virginia.