Sophie Asher came to New Mexico from Seattle in 2012 and graduated from UNM Law in 2015. She worked as a public defender in Albuquerque, focusing on misdemeanors and the Native American Healing to Wellness Court. At Pegasus she works in the kinship guardianship program to help care givers gain legal guardianship of children. Sophie also teaches Kindergarten and First Grade at Congregation Albert Sunday School.
Matthew Bernstein, JD, MA, represents children in abuse/neglect and special education cases, and focuses on stopping the school-to-prison pipeline. He graduated with honors from the University of New Mexico School of Law. He holds a master’s degree in United States history from UNM, where his thesis focused on race relations and education, and a Level II New Mexico teacher’s license. Prior to attending law school, Matthew taught English, history, and economics at Amy Biehl High School in downtown Albuquerque.
Bette Fleishman, JD, MA, is the Executive Director at Pegasus Legal Services for Children. She provides legal representation as a youth Attorney and Guardian ad Litem to children in the Child Welfare System. She has also served as a Respondent Attorney. She is a Commissioner on the Children’s Court Improvement Commission and a member of the Children’s Court Rules Committee. Prior to becoming an attorney, she was a licensed behavioral health practitioner and the Executive Director of the Rape Crisis Center Of Central New Mexico.
Morgan Demic grew up in Albuquerque and obtained her BA in English in 2013. After spending some time in Florida, she moved to Laramie, Wyoming to earn a JD from the University of Wyoming in 2018. There, she developed a passion for family law and immigration law, so much of which directly affects children. After serving as a judicial clerk in Laramie, Morgan relocated to Albuquerque to give back to the community that raised her and to serve New Mexico’s youth. Morgan’s work at Pegasus primarily focuses on kinship guardianship, and she also works with young parents as they navigate parenthood.
Marta Hines obtained her B.A. in Tourism and Recreation from Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. She has always been passionate about helping people in need, especially the elderly. She pursued this passion as a volunteer in a nursing home for World War 2 veterans while collecting data for her Master’s thesis. In 2013 she obtained an M.A. degree in Social Work and Social Therapy from University of Zielona Gora, Poland. In 2015 she went back to school to pursue an Associate of Applied Science in Paralegal Studies at Santa Fe Community College, NM. For the last two semesters of school, she worked as an intern at a law firm specializing in civil law. After graduating in 2017, she started to work at Pegasus as a Paralegal for the Kinship Guardianship Program. Marta mówi po polsku.
Jen Jones Prakash
Jen Jones Prakash has worked at a variety of nonprofits since graduating with her BS in Economics from Westminster College in 2011. She worked in program management for several years before realizing that she preferred to be behind the scenes, creating systems and analyzing the results to help the team. With this in mind, she returned to school for her Masters in Accounting, which she received from UNM. In her spare time, she manages the books for a small preschool, builds furniture to hold her ever-growing hoard of houseplants, plans community storytelling events, and plays with her two poochies, Misty and Olive.
Jerri Katzerman serves as the Education Director for Pegasus Legal Services for Children. Before relocating to New Mexico, Jerri worked as the Director of Advocacy at Columbia Legal Services in Seattle where she supervised the investigation, litigation and mediation of a robust portfolio of issues. Prior to joining CLS, Jerri was a Deputy Legal Director at the Southern Poverty Law Center addressing a wide variety of issues related to educational equity and juvenile justice. For much of her career, Jerri worked as a children’s attorney in the protection and advocacy network in Arizona and New Mexico. Jerri graduated summa cum laude in 1991 from the University of Arizona School of Law, where she was an editor of the Arizona Law Review. After graduation, Jerri served as a law clerk for the late Judge John M. Roll on the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona.
Alma Olavarría Gallegos
Alma Olavarría Gallegos is a paralegal who is passionate about youth rights and justice issues. She is originally from Albuquerque and recently moved back after studying in Los Angeles at Occidental College. There she developed an interest in law and interned with Public Counsel, a pro-bono law firm. She also worked at the student led garden, specializing in restoring native flora and educating others about medicinal herbs. In Albuquerque, she continues her love gardening, and often volunteers with Generation Justice, a multiracial, multicultural youth media project. Alma habla español.
Guardianship Intake Specialist
Cindy Quińonez a native of Ontario, California moved to New Mexico 8 years ago. Cindy worked for an orthodontist prior to becoming Pegasus’ receptionist. Cindy is very proud of her two children. Cindy is an entrepreneur in her spare time. Cindy can be seen in the community volunteering, collecting vintage handbags, at the basketball courts or soccer fields watching her children play their favorite sports. Cindy habla español.
Ana Rabut is our administrative assistant and front desk extraordinaire. She provides office support to our staff in a variety of ways, including interpreting services for Spanish-speaking clients. Ana is from Baltimore, Maryland and moved to Albuquerque at the end of 2017 with a close friend from college. She is a people person interested in working with non-profits specifically oriented towards social justice, and hopes to continue exploring social work and mental health in this setting. In her free time she likes to listen to interesting podcasts, check out local breweries and soaking up as much of New Mexico’s sunshine as she can. Ana habla español.
Nicole Saunders was born and raised in Oregon’s Central Coast and moved to New Mexico 8 years ago to be closer to family. Nicole began her career with Pegasus as an intern before completing her Associates of Applied Science in Paralegal studies in 2015. Since working for Pegasus Nicole has had the opportunity to work with the Abuse & Neglect, Kinship Guardianship, and Youth Law cases. Nicole volunteers her time with the CNM Paralegal Advisory Committee where she assists in the development of CNM’s Paralegal Studies Program. Nicole and her husband Randy enjoy traveling and spending time with their son who is a student at UNM.
Mariel G. Willow, JD, assists grandparents and other caregivers in obtaining legal guardianship of children. Mariel received her B.A. from University of New Mexico in 2010, and her J.D. from Tulane University School of Law in 2014. Mariel returned home to New Mexico and began her legal work as a staff attorney with DNA-People’s Legal Services. Prior to joining Pegasus, Mariel was an Assistant District Attorney in Bernalillo County.