open menu

Online Exclusives

Rappaport Announces 2021 Fellows

Three BC Law students among twelve selected for prestigious public policy placement.


Three of the twelve 2021 Rappaport Center for Law and Public Policy Fellowships have been awarded to Boston College Law School students. The prestigious Rappaport Fellows program places students from Boston area law schools in state and local government offices for summer internships.

This year’s BC Law Rappaport Fellows are Ryan Kenney (2L), Mariatu Okonofua (1L), and Ian Ramsey-North (2L) (shown above, left to right).

Rappaport Fellows are provided the opportunity to explore and expand on their diverse interests in public policy by working with top policymakers throughout the summer. Each Fellow also receives mentorship from Rappaport Center Advisory Board members, prior Rappaport Fellows, and notable practitioners and civic leaders in the public sector. Fellows further learn experientially by exploring the intersection of law and public policy through conversations with high-level government officials, including members from the executive, judiciary, and/or legislative branches. In light of COVID-19, the center will continue to work closely with our partners in state and local government to ensure the success of this summer’s Fellowship Program, virtually or in person.

The Fellows were selected this year from a competitive applicant pool of students from Boston College Law School, Boston University School of Law, Harvard Law School, Northeastern University School of Law, Suffolk University Law School, New England School of Law, University of Massachusetts School of Law, and Western New England Law School.

“The Rappaport Fellowship provides exceptional students from law schools in Massachusetts with opportunities to work in a state or local government office for 10 weeks, mentorship, and experiential learning sessions,” said Rappaport Center Executive Director Elisabeth “Lissy” J. Medvedow. “The 2021 cohort of Fellows continues the legacy of the Rappaport Fellowship with a strong and passionate group of lawyers-to-be who will make their law schools and the Rappaport Center proud,”

Here are the biographies of all twelve 2021 Rappaport Fellows.

Briana Broberg is a 2L at New England Law | Boston and a graduate of The City College of New York, where she studied the History of American Foreign Relations with the Middle East. After graduating from CCNY, she went on to study Arabic Language & Linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to and throughout law school, she has spent much of her time volunteering with organizations dedicated to providing legal, social, and supportive services to refugees, asylum seekers, and other immigrant community members. Broberg is interested in immigration law and public policy. She will be interning at the Mayor of Boston’s Office of Immigration Advancement.

Julian Burlando-Salazar is a 1L at Boston University School of Law and a recent graduate of Boston University’s Questrom School of Business, cum laude. As an undergraduate, he interned at the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office, where he participated in wage-theft investigations. At Greater Boston Legal Services, he helped low-income clients file their income taxes and resolve their tax debts. These experiences showed Burlando-Salazar several complex legal barriers that disproportionately target marginalized people. He is continually motivated by the stories of people in his community to use his legal education to expand access to justice and empower our collective success. When Burlando-Salazar is not busy reading, he spends his spare time enjoying the outdoors and caring for his plants. This summer, he will be interning at the City of Boston Law Department.

Jacqueline Dagle is a 2L at New England Law | Boston. As an undergraduate, she went to the University of Rhode Island where she received dual degrees in English and Human Development & Family Studies and graduated summa cum laude. From an early age, Dagle knew she was interested in pursuing a career in disability law. As an undergraduate, she interned at the Rhode Island Attorney General’s Office where she supported the domestic violence and child abuse unit. This experience inspired her interest in the intersection between disability and sexual violence law and policy. As she moves forward with her professional interests, Dagle’s goal is to use her knowledge and experiences to uplift her community through advocacy, aimed at improving communal accessibility. She will be interning at the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office this summer.

A survivor of domestic violence, Emily Dillan found her calling while rebuilding her life in its aftermath. Committed to helping fellow survivors rebuild their own lives, she returned to school to fulfill a childhood dream of becoming an attorney. She began working as a paralegal in a multi-state personal injury firm, which solidified her plans. Dillan is currently a JD/MSW candidate at the University of Massachusetts School of Law and Bridgewater State University. At UMass School of Law, she is a 1L Public Interest Law Fellow. She has degrees in Business from Massasoit Community College, Highest Honors, and UMass Dartmouth, summa cum laude. Recently, she joined the Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association’s Domestic Violence Anti-Discrimination Task Force, and is finding the experience invaluable. Dagle will be working this summer in the office of State Representative Natalie Higgins.

Brendan Kelly is a 1L at Suffolk University Law School. He spent nine years teaching in Boston and one year working on political campaigns before enrolling in law school. As a teacher, he taught ELA and Social Studies (and two years of Algebra!) at the middle school level in Dorchester, East Boston, and Mattapan. He also coached the debate, mock trial, basketball, flag football, and chess teams during that time. Kelly took a year off from teaching in 2018 to work on political campaigns in Massachusetts and North Dakota. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Trinity College in Religion and Philosophy and a Master of Education degree from Boston College’s Lynch School of Education in Secondary English. This summer, Kelly will be interning at the EdLaw Project of the Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS), Youth Advocacy Division.

Ryan Kenney is a 2L at Boston College Law School where he is participating in the Boston College Innocence Program. Prior to law school, as part of the Development team at the Obama Foundation, Kenney helped coordinate hiring, strategic planning, and goal tracking. He also volunteered as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). Before that, Ryan worked at a small law firm as a field organizer on the 2016 Democratic Coordinated Campaign in New Hampshire and interned in the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs. A native of Sudbury, Massachusetts, Kenney graduated with honors from Northwestern University in 2016, where he majored in American Studies and History. This summer, he will be an intern in the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office Integrity Review Bureau, where he will support the unit’s groundbreaking efforts to detect, rectify, and prevent wrongful convictions.

PATRICK O’CONNOR is a 1L at Harvard Law School. Immediately prior to law school, Patrick spent four years as a math teacher and football coach at Lawrence High School (Massachusetts). Before teaching, he worked for three years in finance and one year as a college football coach. O’Connor holds an EdM from Boston University and a BS in Finance from Wagner College. This summer, he will be working at the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Mariatu Okonofua is a dual JD/MEd candidate in Educational Leadership and Policy at Boston College Law School and the Lynch School of Education. She is a native of Memphis, Tennessee, and graduated magna cum laude from Elon University in 2019 with a BA in Policy Studies and Sociology. At Elon, Okonofua served as a member of the President’s Student Leadership Advisory Council, as a Student Coordinator for Black Initiatives in the Center for Race Ethnicity and Diversity Education, and as an Executive Intern in the Office of the Associate Provost. She also served as a student teacher at Walter M. Williams High School and as a tutor at Positive Attitude Youth Center. Following graduation, Okonofua worked as a Kenan Community Impact Fellow at Alamance Achieves, where she used her passion and skill for equity and inclusion to facilitate conversations and countywide efforts around educational equity. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Okonofua will be interning this summer at the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Jessica Rahmoune is a 1L at Boston University School of Law and received a BA in economics from New York University. Before law school, Rahmoune worked as a paralegal and program associate at Justice Catalyst Law, where she focused on using creative, cross-disciplinary litigation and advocacy strategies to tackle economic injustices. She has also worked at the French Embassy in New York and the Brennan Center for Justice. Rahmoune is passionate about empowering workers and combating exploitative employment practices. She will be working this summer in the office of Boston City Councilor Lydia Edwards.

Ruchi Ramamurthy is a dual JD/MPP candidate at Northeastern University School of Law and Tufts Graduate School of Arts and Science. Prior to attending law school, she worked as the Alachua County regional organizer for Planned Parenthood of South, East, and North Florida, where she led electoral work, grassroots organization and advocacy, and reproductive health education. Ramamurthy hopes to continue this work by focusing on the intersection between racial and reproductive justice and drafting effective policies to combat the disparities that result from discrimination in health care. Currently, she pursues these values through involvement at Northeastern University School of Law’s chapters of the National Lawyers Guild, Women’s Law Caucus, and If/When/How: Lawyering for Reproductive Justice. This summer, Ramamurthy will be interning in the office of State Representative Liz Miranda.

Ian Ramsey-North is a 2L at Boston College Law School. He previously worked in the fields of international development and human rights advocacy. He has worked with community-based organizations in rural Guatemala, Mexico, and Uganda on education, sustainable development, migrants’ rights, and access to justice programs. He has also partnered with international coalitions to promote good governance, conflict resolution, and Indigenous Peoples’ land rights. Ramsey-North was a Law Fellow in the Fellowship at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics (FASPE). Last summer, he worked with the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program’s Crimmigration Clinic on impact litigation at the nexus of criminal and immigration law. He holds a Master of Theological Studies degree from Harvard Divinity School and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Haverford College, where he was awarded the Stephen H. Miller Memorial Award for Political Engagement. Ramsey-North will be working at the Massachusetts Attorney’s Office this summer.

Jennifer White is a 1L at the University of Massachusetts School of Law. She received her master’s degree in social work from Boston University, and for the first several years after graduation, she worked in the field of Child Abuse Prevention in Southeastern Georgia. White then returned home to Massachusetts, where she worked with adolescent parents for 22 years. Just prior to coming to law school, she was a member of the Healthy Families America national accreditation panel. She has worked with families her entire career and has been inspired by the stories of resilience, strength, and hope. She holds these stories in her heart, and they have driven her to law school to work on changing systemic barriers, particularly economic inequalities that challenge young families. This summer, White will be working in the office of State Senator Joan Lovely.