The MLTF is led by a volunteer Steering Committee made up of members and managed by a part-time executive director.
Chair: Jeff Lake
(San Jose, CA) Jeff is an attorney in private practice with Carpenter and Mayfield in San Jose, California. Jeff has been a member of the NLG since 1985 and a member of the MLTF for almost as long. He is currently co-chair of the MLTF and an editor of On Watch. Jeff is also active with the San Jose Peace and Justice Center.
Secretary: Dan Mayfield
(San Jose, CA) Dan is a criminal defense lawyer in San Jose CA . Before going into private practice he was an attorney with the Center for Veterans Rights in Los Angeles and the American G.I Forum in San Jose.
Treasurer: Libby Frank
(Chicago, IL) Libby Frank is a counter recruitment activist in Chicago working with Veterans for Peace and other peace groups to demilitarize the public schools. She is trained as an Accredited Claims Agent and worked for several years helping veterans seek discharge upgrades. She is also on the steering committee of the National Network Opposing Militarization of Youth.
National Executive Committee Representative: Aaron Frishberg
Becca von Behren
James M. Branum
(Fairbanks, Alaska) Alison served the G.I. Rights Hotline as a volunteer counselor in Alaska from 2004 to 2009 and board member for most of that time. Inspired by NLG attorneys who collaborated on Hotline cases, Alison gave up her 20-year accounting career for a law degree. She graduated from the University of Arkansas School of Law in May 2015 and was sworn into the Alaska Bar on June 3, 2016. Her low-fee, solo practice will focus on Hotline support and criminal defense work, mainly serving active-duty and veteran military members. She is based in Fairbanks, Alaska, but will also support the Hotline with Anchorage cases.
(Birmingham, AL) is the immediate past president of the NLG. He is a founding member of the MLTF after having worked at the NLG Military Law Office in Yokosuka and Okinawa for a year. David also is a member of the editorial board of the NLG Review, the Guild’s theoretical journal, and was editor-in-chief for several years. For several years he was chair of the Birmingham Peace Project, and now serves on the steering committee of the Southern Human Rights Organizers Network and is a spokesperson for the Birmingham Human Rights Task Force. His private practice law firm in Birmingham concentrates on police misconduct, prisoner rights and disability benefits.
Jim Klimaski was a co-founder of the MLTF and is the principal in the law firm Klimaski and Associates, P.C. located in Washington, DC. He practices in the fields of Military Law, Employment Law, Security Clearances and Freedom of Information and Privacy Law.
Born to an Italian-American family in Brooklyn in 1947, Matt Rinaldi was an activist in the civil rights movement in Mississippi, an organizer in the anti-war GI coffeehouse projects during the Vietnam War, and a truck driver in Teamsters for a Democratic Union before going to law school. With the MLTF, he currently represents 17 year old recruits who want to get released from the military. (Yes, there are child soldiers in the USA.) Matthew has been a member of the NLG since 1980 and was on the Executive Board of the SF Bay Area chapter for a decade.
(Los Angeles, CA) Eric is a poverty law and homeless rights attorney and activist in Los Angeles, where he is a Staff Attorney for the Center for Veterans’ Advancement (CVA), where he provides free legal assistance to low-income veterans and veterans experiencing homelessness, and serves on the Executive Board, Membership Committee, and Housing Committee for the NLG-Los Angeles Chapter. Prior to joining CVA, he was a Staff Attorney for the Homelessness Prevention Law Project at Public Counsel, a Policy Fellow for the Education Rights Center at Howard University School of Law, and had a private practice providing, among other things, pro bono assistance to preserve public benefits and prevent evictions. Eric has been a member of the NLG since 2005, has served on the board for the Los Angeles Chapter since 2012, and has been a member of the MLTF since 2015.
(Louisville, KY) – Jeff is a founding member of the National Organization of Legal Services Workers (NOLSW) and has served as its the Southeast Region VP for more than 20 years. Jeff was a staff attorney with the Legal Aid Society in Louisville, KY, from 1980 until he retired at the end of 2008. He continues to be an active NOLSW/UAW Local 2320 as a retiree.
As an Army Veteran, Stephen continues to remain engaged in issues affecting the Veteran community, most recently as a staff attorney at Swords to Plowshares in San Francisco and a volunteer attorney for a free Veteran’s Legal Clinic at the Santa Rosa Veterans Clinic. He serves on the Bay Area National Lawyers’ Guild Board.
A former San Francisco Public Defender, who represented youth for over eight and half years, he continues to be concerned about how exposure to traumas continue to affect youth. He started his own firm to continue to serve the family law needs of low income citizens. He serves on the CA State Bar’s Committee on the Delivery of Legal Services which continues to examine the best ways to meet the needs of those with modest means. Stephen is also an ABA officer and serves in a number of leadership positions.