2025 Design-Your-Own Fellowship Applications are Open

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Headshot of Mary Rose Maloney

Mary Rose Maloney

  • Hosted by Bay Area Legal Services, Inc.
  • Sponsored by Greenberg Traurig, LLP
  • Service location Tampa, Florida
  • Law school Stetson University College of Law
  • Issue area Children/Youth, Human Trafficking and Victim’s Rights Enforcement
  • Fellowship class year 2024
  • Program Design-Your-Own Fellowship

The Project

Mary Rose (she/her/hers) will advocate for youth in foster care in Hillsborough County who are victims of human trafficking through direct legal representation, community education, and collaboration within the child welfare community.

Approximately 60% of child sex trafficking victims in the United States have been in foster care. Florida ranks as the third in the country for human trafficking. Within Florida, Hillsborough County has the largest number of children in foster care who are suspected or verified human trafficking victims. Due to the complex nature of human trafficking and the variety of challenges victims face, each case can require extensive research for an unfamiliar attorney and result in delays of proceedings. Despite this, there is no full-time, paid attorney in Hillsborough County whose primary focus is representation of human trafficking victims in foster care. Mary Rose’s project aims to close the service gap for trafficked youth by providing this knowledgeable and focused representation. Her project further seeks to empower youth to learn about how to seek help if they are being trafficked.

Fellowship Plans

During her Fellowship, Mary Rose will serve as the designated human trafficking attorney at the L. David Shear Children’s Law Center (CLC), providing direct legal representation in dependency proceedings to human trafficking victims in foster care. She will create materials to educate attorneys and child welfare professionals on issues, resources, and legal protections specific to trafficked youth. She will also add a human trafficking section to FosterPower, a mobile app and website that provides youth in Florida’s dependency system with information about their benefits, protections, and legal rights.

Meet Other Fellows Like Mary

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Headshot of Magdalena Landa-Posas

Magdalena Landa Posas

Host: Colorado Legal Services

Sponsor: The Morrison & Foerster Foundation

Current Fellow

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Maria Rodriguez

Host: Kids in Need of Defense (KIND)

Sponsor: Fish & Richardson P.C., Microsoft Corporation

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Tori Porell

Host: East Bay Children’s Law Offices

Sponsor: The Morrison & Foerster Foundation

Photo of Elizabeth Lincoln

Elizabeth Lincoln

Host: Kids in Need of Defense (KIND)

Sponsor: Microsoft Corporation, The Sidley Austin Foundation