WHO WE ARE
We are workers, united across different industries to improve our working conditions and our lives. We are coming together as a multiracial community of working people, including immigrants, women, people with disabilities, and LGBTQ+ workers.
WHAT WE DO
We build power through education, organizing, and enforcement. We work to raise and uphold standards in the workplace. And we fight for economic and racial justice in our communities. Here’s how:
We learn together about our rights as workers, and we develop the tools to exercise our rights and make them real.
We organize, speak out, and take action to win changes in our workplaces and our lives. Together, we transform industry practices, change laws, and shift norms around the value of work.
We hold employers accountable to workplace laws and standards through legal services, and we use the law creatively to help build our movement.
WHY WE DO IT
We see a future where all jobs are good jobs, and where all workers are respected and thrive in our workplaces and our communities.
- All workers deserve respect.
- Organizing together is how we build our power.
- Our economy thrives when workers thrive because workers are the driving force behind our economy – not the stock market or investors or technology.
- As workers, we are the experts in our own lives, and we should be leading the work to identify and solve the issues we face.
- Every worker deserves to know our rights at work and have the ability to exercise those rights; and no worker should be retaliated against for standing up for our rights at work.
- We must fight for racial justice and economic justice. We cannot have one without the other.
- Our political and economic systems must be transformed to center the needs of working-class and poor people.
Rachel Lauter, Executive Director, rachel(at)fairworkcenter.org
Rachel Lauter is the Executive Director of Working Washington/Fair Work Center. Under her leadership, Working Washington/Fair Work Center has emerged as a national leader in raising minimum workplace standards through innovative organizing, policy, and legal campaigns. Rachel previously served as the Deputy Chief of Staff and Director of Appointments for Mayor Bill de Blasio in New York City. Prior to joining the de Blasio administration, she served as an Assistant Counsel to Governor Andrew Cuomo and as a federal law clerk. She is a graduate of Brown University and Harvard Law School, where she served as President of the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau, the oldest student-run legal services provider in the country.
Danielle Alvarado, Legal Director, dalvarado(at)fairworkcenter.org
Danielle directs the Fair Work Center Legal Clinic. She works with her team to develop and implement innovative legal strategies to empower workers, enforce minimum standards, and shift the balance of power in the workplace. Most recently, she was an Immigrants’ Rights Staff Attorney at Takeroot Justice, where she provided direct representation, policy and technical assistance, and strategic campaign support to grassroots immigrants’ rights organizations and workers centers in New York City. Prior to that, she was an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow at CARECEN. Danielle has more than a decade of experience working in movements for racial and economic justice across the country, which has deeply informed her approach to legal advocacy. She speaks Spanish, attended Whitman College and Northeastern University School of Law, and is a proud past recipient of the National Lawyers Guild C.B. King Award. Danielle is admitted to practice law in Washington and New York.
Paúl Quiñonez Figueroa, Political Director, paul(at)fairworkcenter.org
Born in Colima, México, Paúl migrated to the U.S. at the age of 7 to be reunited with his father. Paúl first engaged with government as a then undocumented student advocating for state financial aid for undocumented Washingtonians. Since then, he’s worked in campaigns and at the state and local levels of government, while continuing to organize for immigrant rights at the Washington Dream Coalition. Paúl most recently served as an External Affairs Liaison covering education, immigration, and civil rights issues for the Mayor of Seattle and holds a B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Gonzaga University.
Josh Fogt, Operations Director, josh(at)fairworkcenter.org
Josh is responsible for managing operations, human resources, and many other special projects for Fair Work Center. Josh has over ten years of experience in the public, private and non-profit sectors working on progressive policy development, advocacy and strategic communications. Locally, he has worked for Seattle City Councilmember Mike O’Brien, Northwest Harvest and Public Health – Seattle & King County, as well as for Peter D. Hart Research Associates in Washington, D.C.
Shawn Dhanani, Staff Attorney, sdhanani(at)fairworkcenter.org
Shawn litigates and advocates on behalf of workers in actions to enforce their rights under local, state, and federal employment laws. He conducts legal consultations, maintains a caseload of individual cases, and is working to design and implement other advocacy approaches designed to support enforcement and shift power in the workplace. As a law student, Shawn worked as an in-house legal assistant before interning at the Fair Work Center as a Rule 9 Licensed Legal Intern. Shawn earned his J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law and his B.A. in Law, Societies, and Justice from the University of Washington. He speaks Spanish, Urdu and Hindi and enjoys rock climbing. Shawn is admitted to practice law in Washington.
Emily Grove, Staff Attorney, egrove(at)fairworkcenter.org
Emily advocates for the protection and advancement of workers’ rights through her representation of individuals under local, state and federal employment laws. She provides free legal consultations and represents workers through various stages of dispute resolution processes. Before joining Fair Work Center, Emily practiced at a private law firm representing workers in matters of employment discrimination including, race discrimination, disability discrimination, age discrimination, gender and pregnancy discrimination, hostile work environment claims, and harassment claims. Emily earned her J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law and her B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Washington. Emily is admitted to practice law in Washington.
Ricardo Rodriguez, Outreach & Education Specialist, ricardo(at)fairworkcenter.org
Ricardo joined the Fair Work Center team as part of the alignment with Working Washington. He is the Outreach and Education Specialist for Fair Work Center and Field Organizer for Working Washington. He is originally from Mexico City, Mexico, although he and his family have called Yakima home for more than a decade. Ricardo has over five years of experience organizing and training workers in Yakima Valley, particularly among agricultural and warehouse workers. He has deep-rooted relationships in the faith-based and Latinx communities. He is responsible for training and educating workers in the Yakima Valley. In addition, he identifies, recruits, and develops worker leaders and activists to build worker power.
Doris Garcia, Outreach & Education Specialist, doris(at)fairworkcenter.org
Doris is originally from Monterrey, NL, Mexico and moved to Seattle in 2011. She joined the Fair Work Center after working as an organizer for the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights with Working Washington. She has over 8 years of experience as a nanny and has a strong commitment to building community through education, advocacy, and fostering strong relationships.
Mohamed Ahmed, Outreach & Education Specialist, mohamed(at)fairworkcenter.org
Mohamed Ahmed is the Outreach and Education Coordinator for the SeaTac Airport. Mohamed was born in Mogadishu, Somalia. His Family migrated to Pakistan and India at the age of 9. At the age of 12, he started translating for families going through the refugee process in Pakistan and also partook in his first policy protest in front of the United Nations office in Islamabad, Pakistan. Since migrating to Seattle, WA, Mohamed has been volunteering at many of the Somali Community events and organizations advocating for all aspects of social change and the needs of the immigrant communities in South King County. Serving as a community organizer with AL Noor Center, he partook in the fight for $15 minimum wage at SeaTac. He then as President of AL Noor Center partnered with Fair Work Center since it’s beginning.
Henny Ahn, Legal Clinic Coordinator, hahn(at)fairworkcenter.org
Henny is responsible for the coordination of intakes and administrative support for the Fair Work Center Legal Clinic. Previously, she interned for Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal’s campaign and the Neighborhood Legal Clinics at the King County Bar Association. Henny earned her B.A. in Philosophy at the University of Washington.
Jeffrey Gustaveson, Communications Fellow, jeffrey(at)fairworkcenter.org
Jeffrey supports external communications for Fair Work Center and is passionate about collaborating with workers and staff to tell powerful stories that strengthen the workers’ movement. Most recently, he managed volunteer programs and digital organizing at Casa Latina in the Seattle area, where he was part of the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights campaign team. Jeffrey is bilingual in Spanish and holds a B.A. in Politics & Music Performance from Whitman College. In his free time, he enjoys running and hiking, writing, meeting dogs, and performing music with various groups around Seattle.
Colleen Fontana, Outreach & Education Coordinator, colleen(at)fairworkcenter.org
Colleen is joining the Fair Work Center Outreach and Education Team for Seattle area workers. Most recently, Colleen coordinated the Worker Rights Outreach and Education program at Casa Latina, co-leading the Worker Defense Committee which organizes community members, workers and allies to recover unpaid wages through negotiation and community action. Additionally, she facilitated a group of worker advocates to support outreach to certain key industries such as domestic work and construction. She previously worked in a migrant shelter on the US/Mexico border in El Paso, Texas, where she learned more about our deeply broken immigration system and the power of education and information to build community resilience. Colleen is bilingual in Spanish and earned her BA in Journalism from Seattle University. She enjoys swing dancing, backpacking adventures in the nearby mountains, and exploring new local restaurants.
Zhi Chen, Operations Coordinator, zhi(at)fairworkcenter.org
A bio for Zhi is coming soon!
Neil Damron, Staff Attorney/Stanford Public Interest Fellow, ndamron(at)fairworkcenter.org
Neil advocates to enforce and expand workers’ rights under local, state, and federal law. He conducts legal consultations, represents workers in administrative forums and in litigation, and advocates for improved minimum standards in the workplace. Before joining Fair Work Center, Neil was a student attorney at Stanford Law School’s Immigrants’ Rights Clinic, a research assistant for former-NLRB Chairman William Gould IV, and a legal intern at both Legal Aid at Work and National Employment Law Project. He also previously worked at the Urban Institute, researching and evaluating workforce development policies. Neil earned his J.D. from Stanford Law School and his B.A. in Economics and Political Science from University of Wisconsin-Madison. Neil is admitted to practice law in Washington.
Nishi Shankar, Data & Grants Associate, nishi(at)fairworkcenter.org
Nishi is responsible for monitoring grants, grant compliance, and data support for Fair Work Center. Prior to her current role, she worked as a Supervisor for the Family Law Department at the King County Superior Court and has been actively involved in local politics. Nishi graduated from The University of Puget Sound in 2014 with a B.A. in U.S. Politics & Government and has devoted her career to advocating for social change. She was born in the Fiji Islands, is bilingual in Hindi, and moved to the U.S. as a child. Nishi’s life experiences have instilled a strong passion for worker’s rights, economic, and racial justice. In her free time she enjoys spending time with family and friends, cooking, traveling, and hiking.
David Rolf, President
Rebecca Saldana, Vice President
WA State Senator, 37th Legislative District
Rebecca Smith, Treasurer
National Employment Law Project
Martin Luther King County Labor Council
Breskin Johnson & Townsend