Rhode Center Growth Reflects Increasing Ambition and Impact

The Deborah L. Rhode Center on the Legal Profession at Stanford Law School is extending its impact across multiple key projects through the hiring of several new professionals. “The Center is the leading generator of research and policy advocacy on the immense challenges facing the civil justice system and the legal profession,” noted Center Co-Director and Stanford Law Professor Nora Freeman Engstrom. “As our ambition and impact grows, we are thrilled to welcome these extraordinary leaders to our team.”

Rose Carmen Goldberg joins the Center as the new Associate Director of Policy and Programs. Most recently, Rose served as a Deputy Attorney General in the California Attorney General’s Office where she led affirmative civil litigation and policy advocacy focused primarily on gun violence prevention and veterans’ rights. A 2015 graduate of Yale Law School, Rose clerked for Judge Theodore A. McKee of the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. She also served as a Skadden Fellow, providing direct legal services to veterans with mental health conditions. Rose will manage and develop multiple programs and conduct original research to make the civil justice system more accessible and equitable.

Next, Natalie Knowlton joins the Rhode Center as Special Projects Advisor for the Center.  In so doing, she brings extensive experience in legal technology, regulation, and civil justice research. The founder of Access to Justice Ventures, a firm empowering entrepreneurs developing scalable access to justice solutions. Natalie is a thought leader recognized as a 2023 ABA Journal Legal Rebel and was the Director of Special Projects and a Regulatory Innovation Consultant at IAALS, the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System. Natalie will lead the Center’s work on AI, courts, and access to justice.

Daniel Bernal has come aboard the Rhode Center as a Research Fellow and will lead the research component of the Center’s partnership with the Los Angeles Superior Court. Daniel graduated from Stanford Law School in 2019 and also holds a Ph.D. from the University of Arizona. Prior to joining the Center, Daniel clerked for Judge Andrew D. Hurwitz on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and was also a litigation associate at Latham & Watkins.  Daniel’s scholarly work centers on improving access to civil justice, with a focus on how civil procedure impacts case outcomes, litigant participation, and perceptions of justice.

Finally, Brianne Holland-Stergar has joined the Center as the Civil Justice and Innovation Fellow. Prior to joining the Center, Brianne clerked for Judge Sidney Thomas on the Ninth Circuit and Judge Gregory H. Woods of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. She also practiced law as a litigation associate at Davis Polk & Wardwell and Munger, Tolles & Olson. Brianne will oversee the Center’s Civil Justice Student Fellows program and contribute to research and scholarship on access to justice and diversity and mental health in the profession.

We are so pleased to welcome each of these outstanding individuals to our team and look forward to the exciting work to be done.


About the Deborah L. Rhode Center on the Legal Profession

Through a multidisciplinary approach to teaching, research, and policy, the Rhode Center works to make civil justice more equitable, accessible, and transparent and to promote the legal profession’s commitment to the public interest. Since its founding at Stanford Law School in 2008 by Professor Deborah Rhode, the Center has become a leading voice in the scholarly and policy debates on the present and future challenges facing the profession, including particularly the crisis in access to justice, the role of technology in resolving it, and the need for increased diversity.  The Center is also a vivid example of the unique role law schools can play to connect theory with practice and translate scholarly research into real-world impact to benefit both the profession and the public.