Kim Susser
Director, Matrimonial & Family Law

Kim is the Director of the Matrimonial & Family Law Unit. She also serves as an Adjunct Professor at St. John’s University School of Law and New York Law School. Prior to working at NYLAG, Kim was a staff attorney at Victim Services (now Safe Horizon) where she represented victims of domestic violence in Family Court. Kim was a trial attorney in the Juvenile Rights Division of the Legal Aid Society where she represented children in child protective and delinquency proceedings.

Kim is a former Secretary of the Domestic Violence Task Force of the New York City Bar Association. She is also an active member of the Lawyer’s Committee Against Domestic Violence and was the 2006 recipient of the annual In the Trenches award. She also received the Kathryn A. McDonald Award for Excellence in Service to the Family Court in 2009. Kim published articles in the Fordham Urban Law Journal and the Lawyer’s Manual on Domestic Violence regarding orders of protection and custody issues in domestic violence cases. Kim received her JD from the George Washington University National Law Center in 1989.

Lisa Rivera
Associate Director, Matrimonial & Family Law

Lisa is the Associate Director of the Matrimonial & Family Law Unit at NYLAG and also serves as NYLAG’s co-director for the Domestic Violence Clinical Center where law students litigate family offense, custody and visitation cases under a student practice order. The clinic collaborates with St. John’s University School of Law, and New York Law School, where Lisa is an adjunct professor. Prior to working at NYLAG, Lisa clerked at the National District Attorney’s Association where she worked on trainings on domestic violence, sexual assault and forensic evidence. Lisa is a member of the Lawyer’s Committee Against Domestic Violence and serves on the Family Court/Family Law Committee of the NYC Bar Association. Lisa received her JD from George Washington University National Law Center in 2002.

Hayat Bearat
Staff Attorney, Matrimonial & Family Law

Hayat is a staff attorney in the Matrimonial and Family Law Unit at NYLAG. Hayat represents survivors of domestic violence in Family and Supreme Court in cases involving divorce, child custody, child and spousal support, visitation and family offenses. Hayat works closely with clients from Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) immigrant communities to help clients understand and navigate the legal system while remaining sensitive to cultural differences and issues. Prior to joining NYLAG, Hayat was a Staff Attorney at the Legal Aid Society where she represented tenants in their housing court proceedings in the Bronx. Hayat received her J.D. from New England Law | Boston in 2014 where she was on the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court and did research at the Harvard Kennedy School Carr Center for Human Rights on violence against women and girls in the MENA region and focusing specifically on early and forced marriages.

Amanda Beltz
Staff Attorney, Matrimonial & Family Law

Amanda is a staff attorney in the Matrimonial & Family Law Unit where she represents litigants in matrimonial, custody, visitation and family offense cases. As a law student, Amanda participated in the Domestic Violence Clinical Center where she helped draft a brief to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights concerning the United States’ efforts to address violence against women through the Violence Against Women Act. Amanda is also a member of the Sex and the Law Committee through the New York City Bar Association. Amanda graduated cum laude, from St. John’s University School of Law in 2008.

Heather Betz
Supervising Attorney, LGBTQ Law Project

Heather Betz is Supervising Attorney for NYLAG’s LGBTQ Law Project. Prior to joining NYLAG she served as Project Director of the DREAMER Pro Bono Project at Cornell Law School, where she oversaw the work of a team of volunteer attorneys and law students representing undocumented young people applying for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which provides temporary relief to immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as young children. Earlier, she was Senior Staff Attorney at the HIV Law Project and Director/Echoing Green Fellow at the Lesbian and Gay Refugee Advocacy Project. Heather received her law degree from the City University of New York School of Law and her undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina.

Julia Geiger
Paralegal, LGBTQ Law

Julia is a paralegal in the LGBTQ Law Project. She assists on all aspects of clients’ cases, helping the project to provide advice, advocacy, and representation to LGBTQ New Yorkers on a range of civil legal matters. Julia has previously interned at the Bronx Defenders as a Civil Legal Advocate intern, where she focused primarily on public benefits-related advocacy. Julia graduated in May 2016 from Harvard University, where she studied Social Studies and English Literature. As a student, Julia helped lead advocacy efforts for LGBTQ inclusion and against sexual violence on campus.

Victoria Goodlof
Staff Attorney, Matrimonial and Family Law

Victoria is a Staff Attorney in NYLAG’s Matrimonial and Family Law Unit where she represents domestic violence victims in family offense, immigration, matrimonial, custody, visitation, and support proceedings.  Prior to joining NYLAG, Victoria was a staff attorney at Northeast New Jersey Legal Services.  She worked on the Domestic Violence Representation Project where she represented domestic violence victims in restraining order, custody, visitation, and support proceedings, as well as conducted extensive outreach to hospitals, police, and community organizations to train them about civil protections for victims of domestic violence.  Victoria graduated from New York Law School in 2012 where she was an associate of the Diane Abbey Law Center for Children and Families.  Victoria is admitted to practice law in both New Jersey and New York.

Lana Kleiman
Staff Attorney, Matrimonial & Family Law

Lana is a staff attorney in NYLAG’s Matrimonial & Family Law Unit and Coordinator of Project Eden, which works with the Orthodox Jewish community to raise awareness of domestic violence. She represents victims of domestic violence in family offense, matrimonial, custody, visitation, support, and immigration cases. Prior to joining the Family Law Unit, she was NYLAG’s Pro Bono Manager and supervised pro bono attorneys on immigration cases. Prior to joining NYLAG, Lana was a litigation associate at DLA Piper, LLP. She was also a deferred associate at NYLAG in the Immigration Protection Unit where she represented clients in immigration cases including deportation, asylum and status for survivors of domestic violence. Lana graduated from Brooklyn Law School in 2009.

Edith E Lerner
Paralegal, Matrimonial & Family Law

Edith Lerner is a paralegal in the Matrimonial and Family Law Unit, where she conducts intakes with clients seeking legal assistance in a variety of matters including but not limited to divorce, custody, child support, family offense, and immigration issues. In addition to conducting intake, Edith provides support for attorneys, assists in grant management and reporting, and drafts immigration applications for victims of domestic violence. Prior to joining NYLAG, Edith interned at Brooklyn Defender Services as an investigative intern. Edith graduated from Barnard College in May 2016, with a degree in Spanish and Latin American Cultures and a minor in psychology. She is bilingual in English and Spanish.

Alexandra (Sasha) Lewis-Reisen
Senior Attorney, Matrimonial & Family Law, LegalHealth

Sasha is a supervising attorney for the Matrimonial and Family Law Unit and LegalHealth. Sasha represents domestic-violence survivors in divorce, custody, orders of protection, and support cases, at both trial and appellate levels. Prior to joining NYLAG, Sasha was a litigation associate and counsel at O’Melveny & Myers, which is where she started her relationship with NYLAG, working on pro bono family law appeals. Now, part of her work at NYLAG is mentoring its pro bono partners in their trial and appellate representation of domestic-violence survivors. Sasha graduated from Georgetown University Law Center, cum laude.

Maura McCarthy
Staff Attorney, Matrimonial & Family Law

Maura is a staff attorney in NYLAG’s Matrimonial & Family Law Unit. She represents domestic violence victims in matrimonial, family offense, custody, visitation, and support cases. Prior to joining NYLAG, Maura worked as a child advocate attorney for the Defender Association of Philadelphia representing youth in child welfare proceedings. From 2013 to 2014, Maura clerked for the Honorable Mark I. Bernstein in  the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania, Court of Common Pleas. She graduated magna cum laude from Brooklyn Law School in 2013. While at Brooklyn Law School, Maura received the CALI Award for Excellence in the Future in Family Law, Constitution Law III: The First Amendment, and Fundamentals of Law Practice I, as well as the Rose L. Hoffer Prize for Excellence in Torts and the Richard Elliott Blyn Memorial Prize for Civil Liberties. Maura was also a member of the Journal of Law and Policy and the Moot Court Honor Society.

Jaimee Nelsen
Staff Attorney, Matrimonial & Family Law

Jaimee is a staff attorney in NYLAG’s Matrimonial & Family Law Unit where she represents domestic violence victims in custody, visitation, family offense,  child and spousal support, and matrimonial cases. Most recently she had had the pleasure of working as Court Attorney to the Honorable Judith Waksberg in Kings County Family Court.  Additionally, she has served as a member of the First Department 18-b panel, a prosecutor for ACS and as an attorney representing primarily formerly incarcerated fathers with the Fortune Society.  Ms. Nelsen has been as a legal consultant for child support policy reform and legislation at the David Rothenberg Center for Public Policy and HRA and presented at the first New York State Fatherhood Conference.

Ms. Nelsen received her Juris Doctorate from the City University of New York School of Law and her Ed.M. from Harvard University.

Puja Paul
Paralegal, Matrimonial & Family Law

Kimberly Schertz
Staff Attorney, Matrimonial & Family Law

Kimberly is a staff attorney in the Matrimonial and Family Law Unit at NYLAG. Kimberly represents survivors of domestic violence in Family and Supreme Courts throughout New York City in cases involving divorce, child custody and visitation, child and spousal support, and family offense proceedings. She also works closely with clients from Hispanic immigrant communities and assists them in seeking immigration relief based on their experiences with domestic violence. Through her advocacy efforts, Kimberly also partners with city agencies and other advocates to disseminate information and empower survivors of domestic violence. Kimberly received her J.D. from University of Washington School of Law in 2014 where she twice received the Pro Bono Student of the Year Award and focused her clinical and internship experiences on matters involving child advocacy, juvenile justice reform,  and domestic violence. Kimberly graduated from the University of Washington in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish and Women Studies, with a minor in Diversity.

Erica Windwer
AmeriCorps Paralegal, Matrimonial & Family Law

Tuozhi Lorna Zhen
Staff Attorney, Matrimonial & Family Law

Lorna is a staff attorney in the Matrimonial and Family Law Unit at NYLAG. Lorna represents survivors of domestic violence in Family and Supreme Court in cases involving divorce, child custody, child and spousal support, visitation and family offenses, as well as collateral issues such as immigration and victim’s compensation. Lorna works closely with clients from Asian immigrant communities and supporting organizations to help clients understand and navigate the legal system while remaining sensitive to cultural differences and issues. Prior to joining NYLAG, Lorna was an agency attorney with the Administration for Children’s Services (ACS) for two and a half years where she represented the agency on child abuse and neglect cases in the Bronx. Lorna received her J.D. from Boston University School of Law in 2010 where she received the Family Law Award and worked part time as a student attorney at Greater Boston Legal Services representing survivors of domestic violence in divorce proceedings. Lorna graduated with honors from the University of Virginia in 2007 where she double majored in History and Economics, with a minor in Art History.