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PILI Fellows Join CAIR-Chicago Civil Rights Department

Feature 242 CAIR-Chicago has recently been selected as the organization of choice by PILI Fellows Elisa Jillson and Munsoor Hussain. The PILI Fellowship is an international program sponsored by the Public Interest Law Institute (PILI), designed to promote human rights worldwide through public interest advocacy. The program pays new law school graduates to work at a public interest agency in Chicago while they complete their bar exams, after they have already been hired at a law firm.

CAIR-Chicago was accepted as a PILI organization in 2007 in recognition of its effectiveness in providing legal services. Christina Abraham, CAIR-Chicago’s Civil Rights Director, welcomed the PILI Fellows to the Civil Rights team this June.

Munsoor Hussain, a Georgetown Law graduate, explained what led him to apply to CAIR-Chicago: “Civil rights in America has diminished considerably over the past seven years, since September 11th . It brought to light the need for individuals to maintain civil rights for people in general and Muslims specifically.”

“It’s incumbent on people to make this a country we're proud of,” Elisa Jillson, a University of Chicago Law School graduate, explained. “Insofar as we can make that happen with the legal system, we have a responsibility to do that.”

PILI Fellows and interns work at legal institutions serving the public interest, providing disenfranchised and low-income clients with critically needed legal assistance. Participating Chicago law firms sponsor new associates to work at one of PILI's affiliated public interest agencies

For more information, visit:

Fellow Profiles

Munsoor Hussain is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a Bachelor's degree in Finance. He received his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in May 2008. He is a former executive editor of the Georgetown Law Journal's Annual Review of Criminal Procedure where he researched and edited multiple areas of criminal law for publication. Munsoor has been actively involved with the Muslim Student's Association and the American Constitutional Society. He is from and currently resides in Chicago, though he has lived in Washington, D.C., Texas and Michigan. Following his fellowship at CAIR, he will work as an associate with the law firm Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

Elisa Jillson graduated with honors from the University of Chicago Law School, where she received the Edwin F. Mandel Award for Exceptional Service at the Mandel Legal Aid Clinic's Employment Discrimination Project. Elisa graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Cornell University in 2003 with a Bachelor's degree in English and French. Elisa is from New Castle, PA and will be practicing in the fall at Sidley Austin LLP in Washington, D.C

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