2025 Design-Your-Own Fellowship Applications are Open

Learn More & Apply

Headshot of Zoe Dobkin

Zoe Dobkin

  • Hosted by Texas Legal Services Center
  • Sponsored by Terry O. Tottenham Veterans Justice Fellowship, Texas Access to Justice Foundation
  • Service location Austin, Texas
  • Law school The University of Texas School of Law
  • Issue area Veterans' Rights
  • Fellowship class year 2024
  • Program Design-Your-Own Fellowship

The Project

Zoe will promote the stability and wellness of veterans by creating a Medical-Legal Partnership between Texas Legal Services Center and the Austin VA Clinic.

Texas has the second-largest veteran population in the country. Most Texan veterans have a service-connected disability, and a large number live under 150% of the federal poverty level. Many Central Texas veterans struggle to meet their basic needs, and accessing in person resources can often mean a trek of an hour or more. Veterans apply for services at the Austin VA Clinic (AVAC) every day, and many have legal issues. Meanwhile, Austin area housing costs are the highest in Texas and the cost-of-living squeezes area veterans. Thus, veterans often cannot afford the lawyer they need if facing a legal challenge. Losing these legal battles can result in the loss of a home, money, or even child custody. The result is a significant erosion of stability and wellness. This project will address veteran stability and wellness by embedding legal services at AVAC.

Zoe is excited to establish a Medical-Legal Partnership so that hardworking veterans can flourish, especially given her commitment to practicing innovative, client-centered lawyering.

Fellowship Plans

Through the creation of this Medical-Legal Partnership, Zoe will provide resources to address health-harming legal needs that veterans face. Zoe will represent veterans in eviction and foreclosure cases, as well as discharge upgrades. She will also help veterans access financial security and familial stability through supporting existing legal needs. Furthermore, Zoe will host know-your-rights seminars at the Austin VA Clinic and build relationships with social service organizations to co-locate veterans’ services.

I have always been passionate about fighting for the rights of marginalized groups. Veterans are often overlooked and underappreciated, despite the fact they risked their lives serving for our country. I am honored to have the opportunity to help these brave individuals thrive.

Zoe Dobkin /
2024 Equal Justice Works Fellow

Meet Other Fellows Like Zoe

View All

Photo of Kristen Cappelli

Kristen Cappelli

Host: Veterans Legal Services

Sponsor: Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP

Photo of Shelby Smith

Shelby Smith

Host: Public Interest Law Initiative (PILI)

Sponsor: Deere & Company, Lane & Waterman LLP, Riley Safer Holmes & Cancila LLP

Photo of Christian Piatt

Christian Piatt

Host: Homeless Persons Representation Project, Inc.

Sponsor: Covington & Burling LLP, Northrop Grumman Corporation

Photo of Brady Granger

Brady Granger

Host: Legal Aid of Northwest Texas

Sponsor: Texas Access to Justice Foundation