Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer Launches 1L Diversity Summer Program


Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer, P.A. today announced the launch of a 1L Diversity Summer Program and welcomed the inaugural cohort. This new program offers an opportunity for qualifying diverse law students, first-generation college graduates attending law school, and law students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds to experience working at a major New Jersey law firm.

Each 1L student will participate in an immersive program, learn about the law, work on a wide range of matters with lawyers at every level, and gain hands-on, real-world experience during the 8-week program. With both shareholder and associate mentors, participants will have the guidance and support needed to learn and grow.

The 2021 class participants, Matthew Jackson, Anthony Llaverias, and Ronak Patel, were recruited from Seton Hall University School of Law and Rutgers Law School in Newark.

“We are excited to welcome Matthew, Anthony and Ronak, each of whom has demonstrated academic excellence and a strong commitment to advancing diversity and inclusion within their schools and within the legal profession,” said Everett M. Johnson, Esq., a Wilentz shareholder and Diversity Committee Co-Chair, who is overseeing the 1L Diversity Summer Program. “We recognize the importance of taking action to advance diversity in the legal profession and the integral role that diverse firms play in best serving our clients and strengthening inclusive work environments. This program is an important step in demonstrating our commitment to advance diversity and inclusion both at our firm and within the legal industry.”

Matthew Jackson completed his first year at Seton Hall University School of Law and is a magna cum laude graduate of Duke University with a Master of Arts in Theological Studies, a concentration in Ethics, and a Gender Studies certificate. He was also a member of his college’s LGBTQ Leadership Society. Jackson’s work experience includes serving as a Napa County Department of Education AmeriCorps Fellow at MANA de San Diego and as a Social Services Intern providing holistic care for political asylum applicants in the United States and México.

Anthony Llaverias completed his first year at Seton Hall University School of Law. He is the recipient of the Chancellor’s Scholarship, a merit-based award, active in the Latin American Law Students Association, and a student member of both the National Hispanic Bar Association and New Jersey Hispanic Bar Association. His work experience includes serving as a New York State Supreme Court First Department rotating judicial intern.

Ronak Patel completed his first year at Rutgers Law School in Newark. He co-founded a podcast on government and legislative policies and worked as a lease analyst for JLL, a global real estate services company. Patel also launched the Jackson Chapter of Phi Alpha Delta at Rutgers School of Law and serves as its treasurer. Patel is an active member of his law school’s Minority Student Program and he and his team placed third in the intensive 3-week 2018 RECONS Competition.

About Wilentz Goldman & Spitzer, P.A.

Wilentz, one of the largest and most successful law firms in New Jersey, offers legal services to corporate, individual and governmental clients in almost every area of law. Wilentz lawyers have been at the forefront in handling landmark cases, high-profile transactions, and regulatory matters since the firm was established by David T. Wilentz, who served as the New Jersey Attorney General from 1934 to 1944. The firm is based in Woodbridge and has offices in Red Bank, Newark, New York and Philadelphia.