About the RCP

With convictions dismissed, a person faces better prospects for employment, professional licensing, student loans, public housing, foster parenting, and other opportunities.

Students gain insight into and experience with the justice system and are motivated as they learn how their skills can directly help others.


Margaret (Peggy) Stevenson, JD, began teaching Courts and Society at San Jose State University in Fall 2007.  She developed the Record Clearance Project to give students hands-on experience with the law and the court system.  For 12 years before that, Stevenson taught Stanford and Santa Clara law students at community-based clinics, and was the Executive Director of two clinical programs.  Prior to teaching, Stevenson was a legal services attorney for 10 years in California, New Jersey and Massachusetts.  She worked on a range of poverty law issues, including employment, housing, immigration, consumer, health and other matters.   She has written numerous training materials for students and legal rights materials for clients. Stevenson received her undergraduate degree from Stanford University and her JD from UCLA School of Law. She clerked for a federal judge after graduating from law school.  She speaks and writes Spanish.

Hal Peterson, JD,  holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Washington State University and a law degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Michigan. Hal practiced law for 15 years in Michigan and then Washington.

If you are an attorney interested in volunteering for the Record Clearance Project, please contact Margaret Stevenson at margaret.stevenson@sjsu.edu.


The Record Clearance Project maintains a detailed database regarding its clients' demographics and conviction histories.  The database -- removed of all identifying information -- has been the basis for research findings from Prof. Danielle Harris, Prof. Ericka Adams and Prof. Elsa Chen of Santa Clara University.