OBF Chapman-Rogers Scholarship Recipient
Name: Lashandra Peoples-Johnson
Hometown: Dallas, Texas
Law School: University of Tulsa College of Law
Grad Year: May 2019
What field of law are you studying: My goal is to gain exposure in as many fields of law as possible while in law school. I am particularly interested in litigation and criminal law.
Where did you attend undergrad: University of Tulsa
What was your Major/Minor: 2 Majors: Business Law Management & Management Information Systems
What are your short-term and long-term goals, professionally & personally?
My short-term and long-term goals are to be impactful. I know it sounds cliché, but I want to do all I can do, in the short-term and long-term, to be a positive impact on the community of Tulsa by being the voice for those silenced by injustice.
What made you decide to attend law school?
The rising tension between police officers and urban communities is one of the main events that reignited my passion for the law. As a mother and a wife, I originally was hesitant about quitting my job and starting this journey. I have always known that law was my passion and I am so glad that I finally took the leap.
Are there any laws or social rules that completely baffle you?
The law that completely baffles me is the law regarding not allowing unrepresented convicted inmates from raising the same legal issues in post conviction appeals. Although I know the public policy rationale for this law, I think that it is such an injustice. It is so common for convicted inmates to work on post conviction appeals without legal representation. I think that precluding someone from raising an issue, once they obtain legal representation, because they did not correctly raise the issue when they did not have legal representation, is completely baffling.
What historical figure inspires you and why?
Katherine Johnson, who was captured in the book and movie Hidden Figures, inspires me because she was such a fighter against sex and racial discrimination. As one door closed, she found another door. Most inspiring was her attitude. She maintained a good attitude and did not allow the quality of her work to decline, even when she did not receive recognition. I hope to adopt her reliance as I enter the legal profession!
What is the most important thing you have learned in law school or undergrad?
The most important thing that I have learned is that there is such a large need for community legal education. It is mind baffling the amount of people that do not know the law (whether it is criminal rights, civil remedies or estate planning).