2021 LATINO BAR ASSOCIATION BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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Claudia Aguayo,

President

Claudia Aguayo is the Assistant City Attorney for the City of North Las Vegas, where she has worked since 2004. She supervises both the Civil and Criminal Divisions of the City Attorney's Office. Her areas of practice include: government administration; labor and employment law; criminal law; contract law; constitutional law; public records law; open meeting law; policy analysis; and public safety administration. She has been recognized by Nevada Business Magazine as one of the Top Attorneys in Nevada.  Claudia earned her law degree from the University of California, Davis King Hall School of Law. She earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Nevada, Reno.  Claudia has previously worked as a Deputy District Attorney in the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office and as an adjunct professor at the College of Southern Nevada.  Claudia grew up in downtown Las Vegas, where she currently resides with her husband and two children.  Her hobbies include music and travel. Claudia is fluent in Spanish.

Honorable Cristina Silva,

President-Elect

Cristina is a judge with the Eighth Judicial District Court of Clark County, Nevada. She previously served as the Chief of the Criminal Division for the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Nevada, the first woman and Latina to hold that position. Prior to living in Las Vegas, she was a state prosecutor in Miami-Dade County, and previously interned for a judge on the DC Court of Appeals. Cristina earned her law degree from the American University Washington College of Law in Washington, DC, and her undergraduate degree from Wellesley College. Cristina enjoys running, traveling, hiking, enjoying the many restaurants located in Las Vegas, taking care of her two rescue poodles, reading fiction novels, and going to the movies.

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Mayra Salinas-Menjivar,

Immediate Past President

Mayra is an attorney at the Las Vegas office of Holley Driggs, a Nevada-based, commercial litigation and general practice law firm where she helps clients with their commercial litigation and transactional needs. Prior to joining Holley Driggs, Mayra worked for a national general practice law firm helping large corporate clients. She also previously served as the first University Legal Services Fellow providing legal services in immigration to the university community at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Mayra is a proud Salvadoran-Nevadan who graduated from UNLV with a BSBA in Finance and obtained her law degree from the William S. Boyd School of Law in 2017, where she served as a student attorney in the Immigration Clinic handling complex asylum, bond and deportation defense litigation in three states. Mayra serves as a Region XIV Deputy Regional President for the Hispanic National Bar Association.

Ellsie Lucero,

Vice President of Outreach

Ellsie is an attorney at Wood, Smith, Henning & Berman LLP, where she handles a variety of civil litigation matters. Prior to joining WSHB, Ellsie was a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Ronald J. Israel of the Eighth Judicial District Court. Ellsie graduated from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and then earned her Juris Doctor degree from the William S. Boyd School of Law. While in law school, Ellsie was Executive Editor of the Nevada Law Journal, a member of the Society of Advocates Moot Court Team, and served as President and Treasurer of La Voz. In addition to her role as Vice President of Outreach for the LBA, Ellsie is a Deputy President for Region XIV of the Hispanic National Bar Association. 

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Briana Martinez,

Vice President of Finance

Briana was born and raised in Las Vegas, NV. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and her Juris Doctor from William S. Boyd School of Law in 2018. While in law school, Briana served as the President and Treasurer of La Voz and on the board of other student associations. She also was the business editor for the Nevada Law Journal. In addition, Briana was a student attorney at the UNLV Immigration Clinic. After law school, Briana clerked for the Honorable Joseph Hardy Jr., Eighth Judicial District Court in Nevada. She is currently is an attorney at Kaempfer Crowell practicing mainly in business, real estate, and finance transactions.

Laura Zapiain,

Vice President of Membership

Laura is Legal Counsel at MGM Resorts International, a global hospitality and entertainment company, where she focuses on commercial transactions and regulatory compliance (including the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and privacy). Before joining MGM, she was VP of Compliance at a Silicon-Valley backed healthcare tech startup. Prior to that, she was in private practice -- at Holland and Hart in Las Vegas and Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr in Washington, DC.  While in DC, she was proud to serve as a board member of the Hispanic Bar Association of DC. She is also an active member of the Hispanic National Bar Association's Corporate Counsel Division. 

 

Laura earned her law degree from Stanford Law School and her BA in Literature from Claremont McKenna College. 

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Melissa Corral,

Vice President of Communications

Melissa joined Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada in 2018 as a staff attorney for the Family Justice Project-Immigration Program before joining the Legal Service Fund program in December, 2019. Prior to joining Legal Aid Center, Melissa was an associate attorney at Shumway Van where she focused on family law matters. In addition, Melissa was a law clerk to the Honorable Linda Marquis in the Family Division of the Clark County Eighth Judicial District Court. Melissa’s educational background includes a Juris Doctor from the William S. Boyd School of Law and a Bachelor’s Degree in International Business from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. During law school, Melissa served the community as a student attorney in the Thomas & Mack Immigration Clinic. Furthermore, she held leadership positions as the President of Student Bar Association and La Voz, the Hispanic law students association. She currently also holds leadership positions in the Williams S. Boyd School of Law Alumni. Melissa was raised in Durango, Mexico, and is a native Spanish speaker.

Martha Menendez,

Director at Large

A graduate of the University of San Francisco School of Law, Martha is a human rights and immigration attorney with over 7 years of experience in asylum and refugee law. Martha has devoted her career to promoting the rights of everyone to live and work across borders without fear and with the dignity and respect that all human beings deserve. Martha began her legal career as a legal advocate with Asylum Access in Guayaquil, Ecuador and has since worked in various roles within prominent non-profit organizations including CUNY Citizenship Now! and Nevada Legal Services. She has also served as Nevada Chapter President of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, and is a member of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Citizen Review Board.

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Marisa Rodriguez,

Director at Large

Marisa is a Senior Deputy City Attorney with the City of North Las Vegas. She serves as counsel to the city council, city departments, and various city commissions. Prior to joining the North Las Vegas City Attorney's Office, Marisa served as a judicial law clerk for the late Honorable Susan Scann of the Eighth Judicial District Court in Clark County. a then as a Member in a nationally recognized litigation firm. She received both her B.S. and J.D. from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV.

Marisa was named a Top Attorney Under 40 by the Hispanic National Bar Association. She has also been recognized by Nevada Business Magazine as one of Southern Nevada Legal Elite consecutively since 2016.

David Lopez-Negrete,

Director at Large

David is a trial attorney in the Clark County Public Defender's Office.  He represents the working class and least fortunate among us when they face criminal charges.  As a Chief Deputy, his most recent assignment is to a specialty team that handles only life sentence cases.  

Born in Mexico City, David grew up in Portland, OR before attending college at New York University.  He took an active role in the Hispanic community on-campus and rose from volunteer to co-chair of La Herencia Latina, the University’s Hispanic Heritage Month Committee.  David graduated magna cum laude and earned a Founders’ Day Award for consistent evidence of outstanding scholarship.  He next attended James E. Rogers School of Law at the University of Arizona.  Balancing his studies involved competing in Jessup International Law Moot Court--later serving as student-adviser--as well as being elected as Representative, Secretary, Vice-President, and, ultimately, President of the Graduate & Professional Student Council.  Also, he clerked for Daniel Ortega, Jr. in his serious personal injury firm in Phoenix, AZ and for Hon. Philip G. Espinosa of the Arizona Court of Appeals.  David became a naturalized US citizen before graduating law school. 

 

David is a Huellas mentor and enjoys movies, reading, food and fitness.

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Sophie Salcedo,

Director at Large

Sophie Salcedo is a proud native of Las Vegas, Nevada. In 2015, she graduated from the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, NM. Following graduation, Sophie worked at Carroll, Kelly, Trotter, a medical malpractice law firm, to broaden her perspective of the legal field. 

 

Sophie then went on to attend Emory University School of Law in Atlanta, Georgia. During her time at law school, she had the honor of serving as Region VII President of the Hispanic National Bar Association, Law Student’s Division. Additionally, she served as the Vice President of Communications for the Latin American Law Students Association. 

 

Upon graduation, Sophie wanted to come back to her home of Las Vegas to serve her community. She now works as an Associate Attorney at Las Vegas Defense Group where she practices criminal defense. Sophie is extremely excited to serve on the LBA Board and cannot wait for this year’s events and programming. 

Leslie Nino Piro,

Director at Large

Leslie is a staff attorney for the United States District Court for the District of Nevada, focusing on federal habeas corpus proceedings.
Prior to joining the court, she was an Associate at Holland & Hart LLP advocating in a variety of complex commercial litigation, regulatory, and administrative matters. In 2015, Leslie was named a “Rising Star” in business litigation by Super Lawyers Magazine.


While in law school, Leslie was a founding member of La Voz, the Hispanic law students association, and the Huellas (“footprints”)
Mentorship Program for aspiring Latino/a attorneys. After graduating, she served as a judicial law clerk to District Judge Roger L. Hunt and Magistrate Judge Peggy A. Leen in the United States District Court for the District of Nevada.


Leslie is a proud graduate of Rancho High School, the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and the William S. Boyd School of Law. She has stayed active in the local community by serving on the board of directors for the Las Vegas Latino Bar Association, Las Vegas Youth Orchestra, the Latino Advisory Board of Nathan Adelson Hospice. In her free time, Leslie enjoys photography, traveling with her husband, and cheering for the Vegas Golden Knights.

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Steve Jimenez,

Director at Large

Steve is an attorney at Gonzalez & Flores Law Firm practicing civil litigation, family law, and estate planning. He graduated from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice and then earned a Juris Doctor degree from the William S. Boyd School of Law. During his tenure in law school, Steve served as the Vice-President for La Voz and also Vice-President of the Student Bar Association, representing part-time students. Steve also served as the Legislative Extern for the Nevada Hispanic Legislative Caucus during the 79th (2017) Legislative Session. Also as an active member of the Hispanic National Bar Association, Steve has attended and volunteered at multiple Corporate Counsel Conferences.