On January 2, 2019, Jenny Farrell became the Executive Director of Mental Health Advocacy Services. Mental Health Advocacy Services (MHAS) is a private, non-profit organization established in 1977 to provide free legal services to people with mental health disabilities. MHAS assists both children and adults, with an emphasis on obtaining government benefits and services, protecting rights, and fighting discrimination. MHAS also serves as a resource to the community by providing training and technical assistance to attorneys, mental health professionals, consumer and family member groups, and other advocates. Finally, MHAS participates in impact litigation in an effort to improve the lives of people with mental disabilities.
Jenny previously served as Director of External Relations of the Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice, a nonprofit legal aid agency that provides free legal services to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. At LACLJ, Jenny served in a hybrid role as the organization’s Director of Development, Director of Communications, and Director of Pro Bono & Volunteers. Jenny directed the fund development and marketing strategy for LACLJ, including Annual Fund, Major Gifts, Special Events, and Law Firm and Corporate Sponsorships. Jenny also oversaw LACLJ’s communication strategies and worked closely with LACLJ’s Board of Directors and Leadership Council to increase financial and volunteer resources for LACLJ’s core services and raise awareness of LACLJ among leaders in the legal, business and philanthropic communities. Finally, Jenny connected private law firms and practitioners to LACLJ by supervising the placement of family law and immigration pro bono cases with both attorneys and law students.
Prior to joining LACLJ, Jenny was an attorney at Panish Shea & Boyle LLP, where she focused her practice on litigating complex personal injury, wrongful death, product defect and police brutality cases.
Jenny received her Bachelor’s degree in Government from Smith College, where she graduated cum laude in 2003. Jenny spent five years working at non-profit organizations for environmental, consumer and public health issues before heading to law school. She received her J.D. from the University of Southern California Gould School of Law in 2011. While in law school, Jenny was named the 2011 Public Interest Student of the Year and awarded the Mason C. Brown Award for her commitment to public interest issues and talent for trial work.