20th Annual Trina Grillo Public Interest and Social Justice Retreat 2018

Advocating for Change: The Different Roles We Each Play to Improve Our Communities

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Hosted by the University of San Francisco School of Law
MARCH 16-17, 2018 


Friday, March 16: 2:30 pm – 7:45 pm

  • Welcome and Introductions
  • Mindfulness: Opening with Intention, Awareness, and a Compassion-Based Inquiry
  • Concurrent Panels: Environmental Justice and Immigration Justice
  • Reception & Dinner Honoring the Life and Legacy of Trina Grillo 

Saturday, March 17: 8:30 am – 4:15 pm

  • Keynote Speaker: Brendon Woods, Alameda County Public Defender
  • Speed Networking Reception for Law Students, Faculty, Practitioners, and Grassroots Organizers
  • Concurrent Panels: Civil Justice and Criminal Justice
  • Concurrent Employment Workshops: Creating Social Justice Career Paths and Pursuing Social Justice Fellowships
  • Student Debt Relief Webinar
  • Student Panel: The Inspiring Social Justice Work that Students do Across the Country
  • Mindfulness: Closing with Intention, Awareness, and a Compassion-Based Commitment

Featured Sponsor

SALT LogoFor many years, the Society of American Law Teachers (SALT) has co-sponsored the Trina Grillo Public Interest and Social Justice Law Retreat with a consortium of law schools. SALT established the retreat to honor the memory of Trina Grillo (1948-1996), a former professor at USF School of Law, who was a dedicated social activist and justice advocate.  The retreat embodies the aspirations of Trina’s work against injustice, in its many forms, and toward diversity and equality.  

What is the Retreat and why should I attend?

  • The Retreat provides a unique opportunity for public interest and social justice-oriented law students, faculty, staff and practitioners to exchange viewpoints, explore career opportunities, and formulate strategies for social justice.
  • The Retreat offers public-interest minded law school students an opportunity to break the isolation by meeting and networking with other students from around the country.
  • The Retreat not only provides students with a network while in school, but also provides the foundation for a professional network to support their public interest ambitions as their careers develop.
  • The Retreat can spawn creative ways to approach social change using the law as an instrument.  



A: To register, you must be a student at a confirmed consortium school. You can register with your school’s contact person: 

School Name Email

Berkeley Law

Melanie Rowen


Golden Gate University School of Law

Corey Allen Farris


Santa Clara University School of Law

Deborah Moss-West


Society of American Law Teachers

Denise Roy (Co-President)


Southwestern Law

Laura Dym Cohen


Stanford Law School

Mike Winn


University of California, Hastings College of the law

Brittany Glidden


UCLA School of Law

Silvana Naguib


University of Las Vegas, Boyd School of Law

Nikki Harris


University of San Francisco School of Law

Grace Hum


University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law

Mary-Beth Moylan


University of Washington School of Law

Aline Carton-Listfjeld



If you are not affiliated with one of the schools, please contact Grace Hum, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, at ghum@usfca.edu to learn about how to become a consortium school or the process for registering as an individual participant. 

Q: WHERE Will the retreat Take Place?

A: The retreat will take place at USF School of Law (directions). Check-in for attendees will be on the first floor of the Rotunda in Kendrick Hall. There will be signs posted on the day of the event. 


A: If you are hearing- or vision-impaired or require any disability-related assistance, please email `Alakoka Kailahi, Student Affairs Program Assistant, at takailahi@usfca.edu, before February 26, 2018.


A: Yes! See the following list for the three hotels that we recommend. But as you know, there are millions of places to stay in San Francisco! We are also working on creating a list of local law students that are willing to host out-of-town law students, so check with your law school consortium contact to get this information.

Metro Hotel
319 Divisadero Street, SF (1.3 miles away from USF). Queen Bed is $125.58/night plus taxes. Two Full Beds is $111.04/night plus taxes. These rates have no expiration date, but please reserve your room before mid-February by calling 1.415.861.5364 or booking online and mention “USF School of Law Trina Grillo Retreat.” Metered street parking available.

Geary Parkway Motel
4750 Geary Blvd, SF (1.5 miles away from USF). Premium King Bed and ADA Accessible Queen Bed are both $99.99/night plus taxes. Two Full Beds is $109.99/night plus taxes. These are the hotel’s normal rates. To reserve a room, call 1.415.752.4406 or book online. Free onsite parking for guests on a first-come, first-served basis.

Holiday Inn-Golden Gateway
1500 Van Ness Avenue, SF (2.5 miles away from USF). Rooms are $169/night plus taxes. These rates are valid until 2/16, so please reserve your room by calling 1.866.272.7098 and referencing the group booking name "USF School of Law Trina Grillo Retreat" or through this reservation link. Overnight hotel parking is $30/night plus taxes. 

Who was Trina Grillo and why is her legacy important?

Trina GrilloThe Retreat is named in honor of University of San Francisco Law Professor Trina Grillo who died in 1996 from Hodgkin’s disease, a few days before what would have been her 48th birthday. Professor Grillo was well known for her role in academic support work. She also made an impact as a law teacher, and scholar; her influence was extraordinary. She received the 1995 Achievement Award for Contributions to Legal Education awarded by the Society of American Law Teachers (SALT).

Professor Grillo had a vision of pedagogy that recognized and celebrated difference when that notion was minimized or discarded. Using student collaboration, active learning, and student voices, she created a learning community where students who differed from other law students because of class, race, gender, sexual orientation, or physical and cognitive processing abilities could thrive. Her approach has been emulated by colleagues across the country. Trina Grillo's work incorporating diversity into the curriculum of the classroom and clinic continues to be at the cutting edge of legal education.

Professor Grillo graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of California at Berkeley after also attending Radcliffe College. She attended the University of Minnesota Law School, where she was a member of Order of the Coif and served as Note Editor of the Minnesota Law Review. In 1977, after a clerkship with the Honorable James E. Doyle, United States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin, Professor Grillo joined the faculty at University of California Hastings College of Law, where she stayed until 1981. She entered private practice with Altschuler and Berzon and became a mediator in Oakland, California, from 1984-86. She returned to teaching at the University of San Francisco in 1986.

One of her most important scholarly works, The Mediation Alternative: Process Dangers for Women, published in the Yale Law Review, grew out of reflections drawn from her private practice. Another piece, Obscuring the Importance of Race: The Implications of Making Comparisons Between Racism and Sexism (Or Other Isms) (with Stephanie M. Wildman) in PRIVILEGE REVEALED (1996), has received attention for demonstrating how racism may be perpetuated by well-intentioned feminists.

Trina Grillo's warmth, energy, and commitment to promoting equality have produced a wide-ranging network of friends and supporters. A founding member of the Critical Race Theory Workshop, Professor Grillo was also active among feminist critical legal scholars and Latina/o law professors. Yale Professor Harlan Dalton described Professor Grillo as "one of the most straight-forward, fair-minded, spiritually open people, inclined to hide her brilliance."

Many thanks to our consortium sponsor schools:

  • Berkeley Law School
  • Golden Gate University School of Law
  • Santa Clara University School of Law
  • Southwestern Law School
  • Stanford Law School
  • UC Hastings College of the Law
  • UCLA School of Law
  • University of Nevada, Las Vegas Boyd School of Law
  • University of Pacific, McGeorge School of Law
  • University of San Francisco School of Law
  • University of Washington School of Law