About the RCP
Project Coordinator Anahi Beltran grew up in east San Jose and is the first in her family to attend college. She graduated in Spring 2016 with a BS in Justice Studies and a minor in Forensic Science. Based on her experience with the RCP, Anahi plans to attend law school in the future. Anahi was raised by a single mother who worked three jobs to support her sister and her. Anahi herself began working when she was 10, going with family members to clean houses and giving her earnings to her family. As Project Coordinator, Anahi is in charge of administrative operations of the Record Clearance Project. She speaks and writes fluent Spanish.
Project Assistant Nina Bernardini began working with the RCP in June 2015 after being a student in RCP courses. Nina graduated in the Fall of 2015 with a Bachelors in Justice Studies. Nina started out as a nursing major. After taking criminal justice classes, Nina realized that her passion was in the legal field. She earned AA degrees in Paralegal Studies and Liberal Arts in 2007, and began working as a Legal Clerk for an employment law attorney. In 2015 she joined the RCP where she has enjoyed helping with Speed Screenings and giving community education presentations on expungement law. Nina manages the RCP's LiveScan program. She is considering going to law school so she can continue to help people to learn about and use their legal rights.
Nishtha Jolly received her JD from Santa Clara University School of Law in 2017. Nishtha started working for the Record Clearance Project in 2011 and has been involved with the project ever since. During law school, in addition to helping the RCP, Nishtha interned with Bay Area Legal Aid and the Alexander Community Law Center (Santa Clara's community-based clinical program) assisting low-income clients in enforcing their legal rights. Her research project focused on bail reform. Nishtha also worked with the Santa Clara County Public Defender's office, volunteering for several years to help low-income criminal defendants secure their rights. Nishtha is passionate about promoting social equality, and plans to use her law degree to bring about positive changes in the world. She received her bachelor's and master's degree in criminal justice from SJSU. Nishtha speaks Hindi and Punjabi.
Mentor Cheryl Lozano is currently a student at San Jose State University. She received her AA in Sociology from Evergreen Community College and is working toward her Bachelors degree in Sociology with a minor in Accounting. As a former client of the SJSU Record learance Project, Cheryl now works as a mentor in the RCP's Path to Expungement program, helping incarcerated individuals move forward with their lives by passing on hope, faith, and possibilities for new beginnings.
Attorney Subba (Shaun) Naidu, Jr. began working on expungement law with RCP Director Peggy Stevenson when he was a summer student at the Stanford Community Law Clinic in 2005. Shaun has supervised RCP students’ work and helped train students since being admitted to the bar in 2009. He is the author of many of the RCP's materials. He has a JD from University of Iowa Law School and a BA from UC Berkeley.
Student Assistant Christine Nguyen enrolled in JS 140 in Fall 2015 and has remained with the program ever since. Since her freshman year in 2013, Christine served for a year with JusticeCorps, assisting people at the Self-Help Center at the Santa Clara County Superior Court on a variety of cases including family law issues (restraining orders, divorce, child custody & visitation, establishing parentage) and civil/probate issues (eviction for landlord and tenant, guardianship, limited conservatorship). She hopes to be involved in RCP outreach regarding expungement law to the Vietnamese community in San José.
Project Assistant Zulema Pimentel-Licea joined the RCP as a student in fall 2015 and became a staff member in 2016. In 2014, she earned an AA degree in Liberal Arts from Allan Hancock College. She graduated from San Jose State University with a BS in Justice Studies and a minor in Human Rights in Spring 2016. She plans to attend law school to help achieve social justice and help enforce people's legal rights. She is fluent in spoken and written Spanish.
Project Assistant Alyssa Rodriguez earned her M.S. in Justice Studies from San Jose State University in May 2017. Alyssa
was the first in her family to graduate from college. Alyssa grew up visiting relatives in the jail and prison system, one of her uncles
served 22 years and was released in 2012. Alyssa worked at the San Diego Superior Court as a Pretrial Services Intern. She
also co-taught 25 lifers in a creative writing and healing class at Donovan State
Prison. She plans to apply for law school in Fall 2018 and work her way into a judgeship. As a Project Assistant, she is working on professional licensing and Department of
Social Services exemptions for formerly incarcerated men and women. Alyssa received
a B.A. in Sociology at San Diego State University in 2014. She is fluent in spoken
and written Spanish.
Project Assistant Rebeka Seleshi graduated from SJSU with a B.S. in Justice Studies in Fall 2016. She began working with the RCP in 2016. She was born in Sweden and moved to California when she was young. After initially majoring in Political Science, Rebeka took a Justice Studies course and realized that she wanted to help people. Rebeka plans to go to law school. Her family is from Ethiopia; she speaks fluent Amharic.
RCP Project Director attorney Margaret (Peggy) Stevenson has taught students to provide legal services to low-income clients since 1994, including 12 years of teaching Stanford and Santa Clara law students in community-based clinics. She began teaching at SJSU in 2007. She received the Equity and Diversity Outstanding Faculty award, SJSU College of Applied Sciences and Arts (May 2011); Faculty Lecturer Award, SJSU Service Learning and Community Engagement (April 2012). Prior to teaching, Peggy was a legal services attorney for 10 years and clerked for a federal judge following UCLA Law School, where she earned her JD. She has a BA from Stanford University. She speaks conversational Spanish.
Mentor José Valle grew up in a single-parent low-income housing project in East San José. Without a positive male role model, José was vulnerable to the gangs and drugs that surrounded him, and dropped out of high school when he was 16. While at Elmwood Jail in 2006, José joined a recovery program, received his GED, and found inspiration at the Elmwood library in books about pre-Colombian and Chicano history.
Upon release, José continued his sobriety. José wrote for De-Bug and Street Low Magazine about Chicano history, current issues, and his life experiences. He co-hosted a community talk radio show, and founded Souleros Ball Revue, a nonprofit arts, music and cultural empowerment organization. José has been a case manager and gang intervention specialist with the City of San José and nonprofits working with gang-impacted youth and families. He currently works at De-Bug.
Mentor Laura Wright is a former RCP client. While Laura was in custody in 2014 for two felonies related to her addicition, the RCP spoke to her unit regarding legal rights to expungement. Given new hope for her future, when Laura was released three months later, she contacted RCP to start the process of expungement. She worked with Mentor José Valle, maintained her sobriety, attended school full-time and worked as a waitress. In November 2016 the court granted Laura's petition to terminate her probation early based on her progress and to clear her record. Laura graduated from community college in May 2017 and will attend Cal State Monterey Bay in Fall 2017 to prepare for work in the medical field.