Mayra Salinas-Menjivar,

President

Mayra is an attorney at the Las Vegas office of Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith, LLP (LBBS), a national, general practice law firm with approximately 1,400 attorneys across the United States. Prior to joining LBBS, Mayra served as the first University Legal Services Fellow providing legal services in immigration to the university community at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She graduated 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 was a member of the ABA's Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar Council, and was a Circuit Governor for the ABA Law Student Division’s 14th Circuit. Mayra is a proud Salvadoran-Nevadan who graduated from UNLV with a BSBA in Finance. 

Claudia Aguayo,

President-Elect

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.

Marisa Rodriguez, Immediate Past President

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.

Ellsie Lucero,

Vice President of Communications

Ellsie Lucero was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada. She 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. Ellsie is currently a Judicial Law Clerk for the Honorable Ronald J. Israel of the Eight Judicial District Court. In addition to her role as Vice President of Communications for the LBA, Ellsie is a Deputy President for Region XIV of the Hispanic National Bar Association.

Leonardo Benavides,

Vice President of Finance

Leonardo works in Government Relations at the Clark County School District. Leonardo graduated from the William S. Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas where he was a student attorney at the UNLV Immigration Clinic and actively participated as a board member of La Voz. He has interned with the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada during the Nevada legislative session as well as with the Legislative Counsel of California. Before law school, Leonardo also worked at the College of Southern Nevada and with U.S. Senator Dean Heller. When not working, Leonardo enjoys traveling, watching movies, and running.

Martha Menendez,

Vice President of Outreach

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.

Briana Martinez,

Vice President of Membership

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.

Enrique R. Acuña,

Director at Large

Enrique is an attorney with the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada Culinary and Bartenders Legal Service Fund Program. He graduated from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. While in law school, Enrique was the managing editor of the Cardozo Journal of Law and Gender. Enrique expanded his skill set by studying abroad, working in clinics in Prosecutor Practicum, Labor and Employment law, and International Litigation. Enrique earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Film and Video Production at the University of California, Santa Cruz. In his free time Enrique enjoys traveling, listening to podcasts, and playing music.

Honorable Cristina Silva,

Director at Large

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.

Alma Orozco,

Director at Large

Alma was born in Los Angeles, CA. She has resided in Las Vegas, NV for the last 12 years. Alma earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and her Juris Doctor from William S. Boyd School of Law in 2019. While in law school, Alma served as the Secretary of La Voz, as Notes Editor for the Nevada Law Journal, as a student attorney for the UNLV Tax Clinic. She is currently a Judicial Law Clerk for the Honorable Joe Hardy Jr. of the Eighth Judicial District Court. Alma enjoys spending time with friends, family and her dog Lola.

Laura Zapiain,

Director at Large

Laura is Legal Counsel at MGM Resorts International, an S&P 500® global entertainment company with national and international locations. Before joining MGM, she had the chance to work at an exciting healthcare tech startup. Prior to that, she was in private practice -- first at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr (WilmerHale) in Washington, DC, before moving to Holland & Hart in Las Vegas. Her practice largely focused on white collar defense (including the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act) and complex commercial litigation. While in DC, she was proud to serve as a board member of the Hispanic Bar Association of DC.

Laura earned her law degree from Stanford Law School and her BA in Literature at Claremont McKenna College. When not at work, Laura is a mom of two beautiful boys who are tough bosses and demand long (but fun-filled) hours.

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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Melissa Corral,

Director at Large

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.

Contact Us

P.O. Box 1076

Las Vegas, NV 89125

lv.latinobarassociation@gmail.com

The Las Vegas Latino Bar Association is a 501 (c)(6) Non-Profit ORGANIZATION

© 2020 Las Vegas Latino Bar Association

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