Renada Rutmanis: President of the Virginia Animal Law Society, University of Virginia School of Law, Charlottesville, VA

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                            Renada Rutmanis: President of the Virginia Animal
                            Law Society, University of Virginia School of Law,
                            Charlottesville, VA
                            [By Mary Waldron]
                            Renada Rutmanis, 2L and president of the Virginia Animal Law Society at the University of Virginia, has dedicated
                            her educational and law careers to defending and helping others who are powerless to help themselves, whether they are
                            humans or not. When Rutmanis, a lifelong animal lover, started law school in 2005, she immediately gravitated toward
                            the Virginia Law Society because it differed from the child advocacy groups she was usually drawn to. Having come from
                            a two-year stay overseas, Rutmanis had been exposed to some of the harsh and sad realities that animals experience every
                            day, which led her to make a difference by speaking up for them. After her first semester with the animal advocacy group,
                            she became president, an opportunity that has inspired her to follow a career entailing work in the animal law community.


The Virginia Animal Law Society is                The group works closely with the Animal           which is part of the Legal Aid Justice Center
committed to establishing a forum for             Legal Defense Fund, a national animal             in Charlottesville. While she was there,
education, advocacy, and scholarship for          advocacy group that has been fighting for         Rutmanis was instrumental in working
the advancement of animal causes through          the rights of animals since 979; the Virginia    on issues relating to foster care and
the legal system and working to make sure         Animal Law Society considers Animal Legal         education, as well as juvenile justice. This
animals are treated as humanely as possible.      Defense to be its parent group. Much of the       experience not only enhanced her strong
The group participates in pro bono work,          Virginia Animal Law Society’s research has        background in foster care and education but
hosts various speakers from the animal            been initiated by the Animal Legal Defense        also introduced her to the many ways that
law field, and sponsors student events and        Fund and then taken to a local Charlottesville    lawyers can advocate on behalf of children-
fundraisers. Rutmanis and the rest of her         attorney. Members of the Animal Legal             -through courts, legislative bodies, and the
board collaborate on and plan research            Defense Fund have also visited and held           community. Rutmanis’ internship experience
projects, fundraisers, and educational            informative presentations at the university.      helped her to solidify her post-graduation
campaigns. Rutmanis also networks and                                                               career goals.
joins forces with other animal advocacy           After Rutmanis taught children overseas for
groups in Charlottesville, aiming to spread       two years, specifically in orphanages, and        Through her internship and law schooling
awareness of the realities of animal treatment    witnessed the horrors of child trafficking and    so far, Rutmanis has learned that it can be
throughout the world. Many law students           neglect, she was driven to pursue a career        a bit of a struggle to remain in tune with
and professionals are not acquainted with         that would enable her to change the lives of      public interest law work when a majority of
what animal law really entails, making            the children she met more than she could          emphasis is put on making lots of money and
consciousness-building an important               just by teaching them. When a member of           working for huge, powerful firms. She has
challenge for the group to address.               her extended family was almost lost within        discovered that you can find interesting and
                                                  the foster care system, Rutmanis realized         fulfilling work in a legal sector that helps
The Virginia Animal Law Society is an             that myriad children around the world             others in need and still pay the bills.
invaluable asset to the University of Virginia,   needed someone to speak up for them. “I
as no classes in the area of animal law are       saw just how powerless kids swept up into
                                                                                                    ON THE NET
offered at the school. The activities and         that system can be and how badly they need
projects organized by this group provide          advocates to speak and fight on their behalf,”
                                                                                                    University of Virginia School of Law
proactive opportunities for students to get       she said. Aiming toward a practice that
                                                                                                    www.law.virginia.edu/html/index.htm
hands-on experience with their specific           focuses on the needs of children, as well
career interests. They also connect students      as animals, Rutmanis hopes to satisfy her
                                                                                                    Animal Legal Defense Fund
who are seriously interested in continuing        noble ambition to help those who cannot help
                                                                                                    www.aldf.org
to study animal law to other students and         themselves.
professionals in the field, developing a tight
network of individuals who are pushing for                                                          JustChildren
                                                  Last summer, Rutmanis dove into her
the same cause.                                                                                     www.justice4all.org/programs/justchildren
                                                  ambition by interning at JustChildren,



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Description: Article About Renada Rutmanis The President Of Virginia Animal Law Society, University Of Virginia School Of Law, Charlottesville, VA And Information About Law Careers, Educational Career, Law Schools, Legal System, Animal Law Community And More.
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