Impact Fund Staff Profiles

Jocelyn Larkin - Executive Director

Jocelyn's practice focuses on complex employment discrimination and class action practice on behalf of plaintiffs. Jocelyn has served as class counsel in several major employment class actions, including Ellis v. Costco WholesaleDukes v. Wal-Mart StoresParra v. Bashas' Stores, Inc.Stender v. Lucky Stores, and Vandell v.Chevron Corporation. She co-represented the California respondents in Amchem v. Windsor, before the Third Circuit and the United States Supreme Court. Jocelyn has also represented many individual employees in sex harassment, wrongful termination, and discrimination actions. She is a frequent speaker on employment law, ethics, and civil rights issues and has published many articles on employment and class action practice. She is the co-editor of the class action chapter of Lindemann & Grossman, Employment Discrimination Law, the leading treatise on employment discrimination law.

Jocelyn is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego (B.A. 1980), and the UCLA School of Law (J.D., 1983). Jocelyn had a one-year fellowship with the Los Angeles-based Center for Law in the Public Interest, before joining San Francisco's Heller, Ehrman, White & McAuliffe. In 1987, Jocelyn became associated with Farnsworth, Saperstein and Seligman, and was elevated to named shareholder in 1990. She served as the firm's managing director from 1991 to 1992, until she left to found the Oakland-based law firm, Ryu, Dickey & Larkin.

Jocelyn is the co-chair of the ABA Litigation Section's Class Actions and Derivative Suits Committee. She has recently been appointed to the ABA Section of Litigation Special Committee on the Future of Civil Litigation. In addition, Jocelyn formerly served as a member of the National Governing Board of Common Cause, a grassroots citizens' lobby committed to open democracy, and as the chair of California Common Cause. She is a member of the National Employment Lawyers Association.

 

Teddy Basham-Witherington - Director of Development & Communications

Teddy joined the Impact Fund team in October 2014, with an extensive background in non-profit management and marketing - most recently as Chief Marketing Officer at Out & Equal Workplace Advocates. He served as the Executive Director of the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus (2007–2012), as Executive Director of San Francisco LGBT Pride (1997–2006), and as the Festival Producer of the London, LGBT Pride Festival (1992-1997).

He has served on the board of a number of non-profit organizations, including the San Francisco Convention and Visitors Bureau (2000-2003).

He started his professional life as a paralegal at the law firms of Taylor Wessing (1980-1989) and Hamlins (1989-1992) in London, England, specializing in trusts and charities. While at Taylor Wessing he earned the firm a Legal 500 recommendation for Court of Protection work. 

Teddy’s culinary skills are renowned and he was the food writer at San Francisco Bay Times (2005-2012).

 
 

Amy Daniewicz - Grant Program Administrator

Prior to joining the Impact Fund as the Grant Program Administrator, Amy worked in a similar capacity for the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, where she managed grants supporting children in the Austin community. Prior to that, Amy worked as a non-profit communications director, an entrepreneur, and a blogger. Amy holds a master’s degree in social work from the University of Texas at Austin and a bachelor’s degree in English from Trinity University.

Amy’s favorite joys in life are spending time with her husband and three children, making and eating good food with friends and family, and enjoying the beauty of nature.

 

Zachary McCoy - Paralegal

Zachary graduated from the University of California at Santa Cruz in 2013 with a B.A. in History and a minor in Education and worked for two years at Lewis, Feinberg, Lee & Jackson, P.C. His experience with plaintiff-side class action law suits and interest in social justice lead him to join the Impact Fund team in fall 2015.

A native Oklahoman, Zach enjoys backpacking, camping, fishing, swimming, trail running, and anything else that gives him a chance to be outdoors. He also enjoys traveling and cooking, and is a volunteer at the Guide Dogs for the Blind and the California Coastal Commission.

 

Lynnette MinerLitigation Fellow

Lynnette is a 2014 graduate of Harvard Law School. She joined the Impact Fund in 2015 after clerking for the Honorable Fortunato Benavides on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in Austin, Texas.

While at Harvard, Lynnette pursued a variety of human rights and public interest work, such as litigation aimed toward holding corporations and government officials accountable for human rights abuses under the Alien Tort Statute, community-based legal services in rural Sierra Leone, anti-death penalty advocacy, and direct representation of women who experienced sexual harassment and sexual violence. She was also Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard Human Rights Journal.

Lynnette graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to law school, she spent two years working in business development while serving as a Court Appointed Special Advocate for foster children in Washington, DC. Lynnette is licensed in California and speaks Korean.

 

Lindsay Nako - Director of Litigation and Training

Lindsay has spent her career representing employees in employment discrimination and employee benefits class actions, including cases brought on behalf of employees and job applicants alleging discrimination based on race, nationality, and gender; pension plan participants and beneficiaries arising from imprudent investment of plan assets; and employees who have suffered illegal vacation pay forfeitures.

Lindsay currently serves as class counsel in the nation-wide gender discrimination class action, Ellis v. Costco Wholesale, and also recently served as trial counsel in a 56-plaintiff California negligence mass action in Marin County Superior Court.

Lindsay graduated Phi Beta Kappa and Highest Honors from University of California, Berkeley, and received her law degree from University of California, Berkeley School of Law. Prior to joining the Impact Fund, Lindsay was a shareholder at the Oakland-based law firm Lewis, Feinberg, Lee & Jackson, P.C.

Lindsay has been named a "Top Woman Attorney in Northern California" and "Northern California Rising Star" by Super Lawyers Magazine and San Francisco Magazine each year since 2009, and received the East Bay Community Law Center's annual Attorney Award in 2012.

 

Mae Nguyen - Project Attorney

Trang ("Mae") Nguyen joined the Impact Fund in 2016 and serves as project counsel in the nation-wide gender discrimination class action, Ellis v. Costco Wholesale. Mae previously worked on data-driven criminal justice reforms at the California Department of Justice. Prior to that, she was an associate at Davis Polk & Wardwell, LLP and a law clerk for the Honorable Jon D. Levy of the Maine Supreme Judicial Court.

Mae graduated from Bates College (B.A. 2007) and New York University School of Law (J.D. 2013). At NYU, she was a Jacobson Law & Leadership Scholar, served as Executive Editor of the New York University Law Review, and advocated for immigrant rights in federal immigration and district courts. Before law school, Mae spent three years in consulting in New York and her native country, Viet Nam, and cofounded a non-profit dedicated to empowering Vietnamese youth.

Mae’s favorite activities are running the East Bay’s redwood-lined trails with her husband and dog Moose, and exploring all the natural beauty, characters, and good food that California offers.

Jason Soto - Accountant

Jason has worked managing finances for corporations and non-profits in both New York and California, including Dagher Engineering, a New York firm committed to developing sustainable designs intended to reduce and reuse energy and water resources. In California, he has worked for several 501(c) organizations dedicated to making a difference in society. A native New Yorker, Jason now enjoys volunteering at Grid Alternative, spending time with his family, and exploring the natural and cultural wonders of the great state of California.

 

Sela Steiger - Office Administrator-Executive Assistant

Sela graduated from Oberlin College in 2009 with a B.A. in Africana Studies and History. Since then, she has been involved in numerous projects related to education, communications, and non-profit work. A California native, Sela loves the outdoors, particularly visiting Yosemite National Park and the ocean, whenever she gets a chance.