2014 Recipient

You are here

Where presented : 
NLADA Annual Conference
Recipient(s) name: 
Rosalie (Lisa) Chavez
Recipient title: 
Manager of Native American Programs
Recipient organization: 
New Mexico Legal Aid, Inc.
Recipient organization city: 
Recipient organization state: 
New Mexico
Reason for selection of recipient(s): 

Lisa is a member of San Felipe Pueblo. She is a 1987 graduate of the University of New Mexico School of Law and has devoted her entire legal career to advocating for low income and disenfranchised Indian people.

Lisa is admitted to practice law in New Mexico, the Federal District Court of New Mexico, and several Pueblo tribal courts. She is currently the manager of the Santa Ana office of New Mexico Legal Aid and manages the Native American Program (NAP), which provides free legal assistance to low-income people living on or near the 19 Pueblo Indian communities. NAP also provides technical assistance and training to tribal services providers, tribal court judges, and staff on various topics such as tribal court procedures, domestic violence advocacy, children’s law issues, and tribal court jurisdiction.

Lisa directed the Indian Pueblo Legal Services, Inc., between 1994 and 1998 when the program merged with Northern New Mexico Legal Services. She also served as the Interim Director of New Mexico Legal Aid twice since 2000 when all New Mexico legal aid programs merged into a statewide program.

Lisa Chavez also served on various boards and commissions including the New Mexico Access to Justice Commission, Southwest Association for Indian Art (SWAIA), San Felipe Pueblo Board of Education, and the Indian Law Section of the State Bar of New Mexico. She was a founding member of the Family Harmony Project, an advocacy program for victims of domestic violence in the checkerboard area of the Navajo Nation. Lisa was nominated and selected as the Best of the Bar in Indian Law by the New Mexico Business Weekly in 2009.