Cielo Marie Mendoza
I grew up in New Jersey
and currently live in Fletcher, Vermont with my husband and two young sons.
In college, I studied environmental studies and biology. Studying ecosystems showed me how interconnected we are to our surroundings and resources. Studying environmental justice focused my attention on how industry effects the environment and community. I resolved to make choices that would reduce my effect on the environment and to fight for people in need. I joined the House of Peace and Justice and there I championed environmental justice and workers’ rights issues.
At Vermont Law School, I finished my master’s degree in environmental law and policy and completed the juris doctorate program. I served as a Student Bar Association class representative and Secretary of the National Lawyers Guild. I helped organize campus events and fundraisers for the NLG while fostering my legal skills that would help people and the environment. I remain dedicated to this work through my practice.
The first case that I worked on was an SEC case where a large corporation misrepresented their assets to their employees who had invested in that corporation. Other cases I have handled include environmental enforcement, public criminal defense and juvenile defense cases; and tough custody and family law cases. When I transitioned to business law, estate planning and civil litigation, I did not leave my goal to serve my community behind.
My past volunteer duties include being a women’s’ shelter volunteer and COSA member with the CJC in St. Albans. I also served as Assistant Director with the Burlington Dismas House.I am a Restorative Justice Panel Member for the FGIRJC in St. Albans. I have served on the panel for over five years. Still, I have more to offer my community and hope that I can serve as a board member to help continue our mission.