The D.C. Tenants’ Rights Center was founded in 2013 by attorney Marc Borbely. Marc has represented more than two thousand tenants in disputes with landlords, in the District of Columbia. Marc has been reviewed by clients on AVVO. He has been serving as a landlord-tenant mentor to other attorneys, through the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Program, since 2011. Marc received a B.S. in biochemistry at Yale University and a law degree at the U.D.C. David A. Clarke School of Law. He serves as co-chair of the D.C. Bar's Courts, Lawyers, and Administration of Justice Community. From 2008 to December 2012, Marc was a staff attorney at Neighborhood Legal Services Program. He is admitted to practice law in the District. Marc has lived on Capitol Hill since 1999 and is the proud father of two young children.
Before joining our firm in 2016, Attorney Catherine Denny served as a Public Defender for the Colorado State Public Defenders’ Office in Brighton, Colorado. As a Public Defender, Catherine represented clients in twelve jury trials. Catherine enjoys using her litigation experience to enthusiastically and zealously represent tenants in the District of Columbia. Catherine received a Bachelor of Arts from Colby College and a Juris Doctor with a Constitutional Rights and Remedies Certificate from University of Denver, Sturm College of Law. Catherine road biked across the country from Washington to Maine, and mountain biked up the country from New Mexico to Montana. Catherine is admitted to practice law in Colorado and in the District of Columbia.
Originally from Ohio, attorney Leigh Higgins graduated from the University of Montana and then started her legal career representing student tenants at the Ohio State University during law school. While living in Albuquerque, Leigh practiced in bankruptcy and civil courts and represented the State of New Mexico, working for the Child Support Enforcement Division. Leigh also serves on the board of Hyattsville Aging in Place, a volunteer organization that helps seniors in her community. She joined the D.C. Tenants' Rights Center in 2016.
Nirmala Lazare is an accomplished gymnast and gymnastics coach. She is studying criminal justice at the University of Maryland University College. She began working at the D.C. Tenants' Rights Center as an Administrative Legal Assistant in 2018.
Administrative Legal Assistant Jeanine H. Marie joined the D.C. Tenants’ Rights Center in 2019. She graduated in 2017 with a B.A. in Political Communication from the George Washington University, where she covered social issues and student life as an editor at the campus newspaper. She wrote her senior thesis about failed U.S. anti-poverty programs and critiqued media coverage of those programs. Previously, she worked at a nonprofit publisher, as well as at a yoga studio and a coffee cart. She’s also served as an advocate for domestic violence survivors and a volunteer around D.C., where she has been a tenant for three years.
Originally from California, attorney Neil Satterlund graduated from U.C. Berkeley with a theater degree, worked as a theatrical lighting designer for two years, then went back to U.C. Berkeley for a law degree. During law school, he worked with the City Attorney of San Francisco and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. After he graduated, he spent three years at the law firm Siegel and Yee, where he represented student activists in a complex class action lawsuit against his alma mater. Working his way east, Neil clerked at the U.S. Court of International Trade, and helped homeowners fighting foreclosure with the New York Legal Assistance Group. He is excited to help residents here fight to secure their rights. Neil once traveled from Amsterdam to Hong Kong, mostly by train. He is a tenant in the District of Columbia, along with his remarkable wife. They enjoy board games and occasionally brew mead.
Attorney Sara Turley joined the D.C. Tenants’ Rights Center in January 2019. Sara began her legal career at the U.D.C. David A. Clarke School of Law, where she represented special education students in the Juvenile & Special Education Law Clinic, and low-income housing cooperatives with the Community Development Law Clinic. She also interned for Paul Strauss & Associates, P.C., a D.C. firm primarily focused on Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA) matters. Prior to joining our firm, Sara was an associate attorney at Bar-Adon & Vogel, PLLC handing real estate and construction litigation cases in the District of Columbia. Sara is originally from Toledo, Ohio, where she completed her B.A. in Political Science & Communication (Go Rockets!). Sara is an avid yogi who enjoys cooking with her husband, and taking walks with their dog. She is a tenant in the District of Columbia.