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The American Center for Law & Justice has one of the most respected and experienced teams of attorneys and staff, who work with international bodies, engage in domestic and international litigation, provide legal services, advise individuals and government agencies, and counsel clients on human rights issues.

Senior Attorneys

Robert W. "Skip" Ash

Senior Litigation Counsel for National Security Law

Robert W. "Skip" Ash is the ACLJ's Senior Litigation Counsel for National Security Law. Emphasizing in national security law and First Amendment Law, Ash is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and served 22 years on active duty as a U.S. Army officer which included serving as a military strategist for the Secretary of Defense in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategy and Plans in the Pentagon.

A graduate of Regent University School of Law, Ash also serves as a member of the faculties of the School of Law and the Robertson School of Government at Regent where he teaches courses on national security law, international law, First Amendment law, and legal research.

Cece Heil

Senior Counsel (Public Policy, Global Legal Matters)

CeCe Heil is a Senior Counsel specializing in public policy and global legal matters including the United Nations. She heads a team of lawyers handling cases in defense of life, protection of US National Security interests and dealing with Islamic extremism.

Before joining the ACLJ, Heil worked in private practice in Missouri and Tennessee serving as counsel to many internationally recognized clients and is on the board of several national ministries. She is a recognized leader in her work to have pro-family, pro-life and pro-free enterprise policies enacted, including being a candidate for Congress. Her service and knowledge as a Constitutional scholar earned her the support of Sarah Palin and was one of a handful of candidates named as a “Mama Grizzly” by the former Alaska Governor.

Heil is a 1992 graduate of Regent University School of Law. She is admitted to practice in California, Missouri, Virginia, Tennessee, and before the United States Supreme Court.

Laura Brown Hernandez

Senior Counsel (Constitutional Law)

Laura Brown Hernandez is a Senior Research Counsel at the ACLJ emphasizing in constitutional litigation at the federal appellate level and has participated as amicus curiae counsel in numerous cases before the U.S. Supreme Court.

A graduate of The University of Richmond Law School in Richmond, Virginia, Hernandez clerked for the Honorable John D. Butzner of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit before gaining extensive experience in private practice at law firms in Richmond and Norfolk, Virginia.

She has served as an adjunct professor of legal writing at Regent University where her husband, Michael V. Hernandez, serves as Professor of Law.

Francis J. Manion

Senior Counsel (First Amendment Law, Pro-Life Legal Matters)

Francis J. Manion is Senior Counsel with the ACLJ who emphasizes First Amendment law and pro-life legal matters before state and federal courts.

A 1980 graduate of Seton Hall School of Law, Manion honed his litigation skills with more than 15 years of experience as a trial attorney in private law firms where he served as trial counsel on behalf of pro-life demonstrators. He joined the ACLJ in 1996 and emphasizes protecting constitutional rights in the public school, the work environment, and the public arena.

Manion also emphasizes defending the public displays of the Ten Commandments and other historic displays that are part of our nation’s heritage. He also focuses on safeguarding the rights of medical personnel who are often required by employers to violate their consciences and religious beliefs by participating in pregnancy-ending procedures.

Colby M. May

Senior Counsel (Director of the Washington Office)

Colby M. May is Senior Counsel and Director of the Washington Office of the ACLJ. May represents members of the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate on legislative initiatives involving national security, abortion, marriage, and pornography. With the ACLJ since 1994, May emphasizes federal litigation, regulatory proceedings, communications and technology, non-profit tax issues, and First Amendment law.

May, a graduate of the George Mason University School of Law, has argued, participated in, or acted as amici curiae counsel in several landmark cases including Branch Ministries, Inc. v. Richardson, Santa Fe Independent School District v. Doe, Boy Scouts of America v. Dale, National Interfaith Cable v. FCC, and National Endowment for the Arts v. Finley.

He also serves on the board of directors of many civic organizations including the Enterprise Development International, Inc. – a public charity fostering development in emerging countries, and Enough is Enough! – a pro-family organization working to make the Internet safe for children.

Thomas P. Monaghan

Senior Counsel

Thomas P. Monaghan is Senior Counsel of the ACLJ with extensive experience involving protecting the sanctity of human life. With experience as both a public defender and prosecuting attorney, Monaghan sharpened his legal skills in private practice and has extensive trial and appellate experience.

Monaghan has studied at the London School of Economics, Brandeis University, and Vanderbilt University. He is a decorated Vietnam War veteran having received the Bronze star.

Monaghan has handled dozens of trials throughout the country and is considered one of the best trial attorneys in the United States. Monaghan also oversees the European Center for Law and Justice located in Strasbourg, France. Monaghan is one of the founders of the American Center for Law and Justice and has worked with ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow since 1986.

Stuart J. Roth

Senior Counsel

Stuart J. Roth serves as Senior Counsel to the American Center for Law and Justice and the European Center for Law and Justice. Roth attended law school with Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow and they have practiced law together since 1980. He is a nationally known and recognized constitutional lawyer and over the years has appeared on hundreds of national television and radio broadcasts sharing his legal analysis and commentary.

Stuart J. Roth has participated in 12 cases that have been argued before the United States Supreme Court including the landmark decisions in Mergens and Lambs Chapel that altered the landscape of religious liberties litigation. Roth has also been involved in cases before the European Court of Human Rights and the International Criminal Court.

Roth has an extensive legal background in the areas of tax, corporate and civil litigation and has also served as General Counsel to numerous corporate entities. He is a graduate of Florida State University and Mercer University School of Law.

Geoffrey Surtees

Senior Counsel

Geoffrey Surtees is an attorney with the ACLJ and specializes in religious civil liberties. Geoff is a graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Law and holds a Master’s Degree in Theological Studies (summa cum laude) from the Pontifical Lateran University. Since joining the ACLJ as an attorney in 2001, Geoff has been active in a wide array of First Amendment cases, including the free speech rights of pro-life demonstrators and public school students. He has also participated in cases involving the conscience rights of medical personnel and the religious rights of public and private employees.

Walter M. Weber

Senior Litigation Counsel

Walter M. Weber is Senior Litigation Counsel for the ACLJ in the Washington, D.C. office. A highly regarded legal writer, Weber received his bachelor’s degree from Princeton University and his law degree from Yale Law School.

Weber emphasizes First Amendment law and has written briefs in many landmark cases at the Supreme Court including NOW v. Scheidler, Lamb’s Chapel v. Center Moriches School District and Bray v. Alexandria Women’s Health Clinic.

Weber has argued more than a dozen times in appeals before federal and state courts. Prior to joining the ACLJ, Weber served as a staff attorney with the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights.

Edward White

Senior Counsel

Edward White is Senior Counsel with the ACLJ and has been practicing law for more than twenty years. He is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame Law School, where he was a Thomas J. White Center for Law & Government Scholar and managing and student articles editor of the Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy.

He began his legal career by having the privilege to serve as a law clerk for three judges, gaining experience on a number of state and federal legal matters. White clerked for the Honorable G. Kendall Sharp of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, the Honorable Bobby W. Gunther of the Florida District Court of Appeal for the Fourth District, and the Honorable Daniel A. Manion of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

After his judicial clerkships, White worked as an associate in a products liability law firm. He then served for five years as an Assistant United States Attorney, handling federal civil and criminal cases at the trial and appellate court levels.

Since 2000, White has been specializing in civil rights litigation, representing clients across the country primarily in the areas of free speech, religious freedom, sanctity of human life, and traditional family values.

Tiffany Barrans

International Legal Director & Senior Litigation Counsel

Tiffany Barrans is the International Legal Director at the ACLJ, and also serves as a Senior Litigation Counsel in domestic litigation matters. As Senior Litigation Counsel for the ACLJ, Ms. Barrans has participated in several First Amendment cases at all levels in the U.S. federal courts. In her capacity as International Legal Director, Ms. Barrans assists in cases throughout Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, and works as a liaison between the ACLJ and its international affiliate offices. She has also represented matters of international concern before the United Nations, the European Court of Human Rights, the European Parliament, and various national parliaments around the world. Ms. Barrans graduated top of her class at Regent University School of Law, where she served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Regent University Law Review. Ms. Barrans earned her BA from the University of Puget Sound. Before joining the ACLJ, she clerked for the Honorable William H. Pryor Jr. of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. Ms. Barrans serves as a Senior Research Associate for the Oxford Centre for Law and Public Policy, and frequently contributes to the global discussion of religious freedom through writing and public speaking.

Matthew Clark

Senior Counsel for Digital Advocacy

Matthew Clark is Senior Counsel for Digital Advocacy with the ACLJ in the Washington, D.C. headquarters. Matthew Clark has authored numerous articles for such publications as the Washington Post, the Washington Times, and RedState.com on critical constitutional and policy matters facing our nation and the fight for human rights worldwide. Prior to rejoining the ACLJ, where he clerked while in law school, Matthew Clark served as Judicial Law Clerk for the Honorable Walter S. Felton, Jr., Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals of Virginia. Matthew Clark earned a Juris Doctor and Master's Degree in Public Policy from Regent University where he served as the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Regent Journal of Law and Public Policy. He also currently serves as a Senior Research Associate for the Oxford Centre for the Study of Law and Public Policy at Harris Manchester College, Oxford University.

Carly F. Gammill

Senior Litigation Counsel

Carly F. Gammill serves as Senior Litigation Counsel with the ACLJ, focusing on First Amendment and related issues in courts throughout the country. She has been involved in numerous trial and appellate level cases, both state and federal, including presenting oral argument before the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals. A graduate of Regent University School of Law, Carly joined the ACLJ as a law clerk in 2005 and as a full time litigator in 2007. She has represented clients in a variety of contexts, including individual private citizens and nonprofit organizations in free speech and discrimination cases, as well as public school boards and other local government bodies in Establishment Clause litigation. She has been actively involved in pro-life matters, litigating cases against Planned Parenthood and defending the right of medical professionals to refuse to violate their consciences by participating in abortion and other life-ending procedures. Her experience also includes litigation under the federal False Claims Act. A former educator, Carly has a special interest in constitutional and other legal matters affecting the nation’s school campuses.

Shaheryar Gill

Senior Litigation Counsel

Shaheryar Gill serves as Senior Litigation Counsel with the ACLJ in Virginia Beach, where he works on international religious freedom issues. He also oversees ECLJ’s affiliate office in Pakistan, which provides legal assistance to persecuted Christians. Shaheryar Gill has authored numerous country reports, detailing the situation of religious freedom, and has co-authored several ACLJ publications. He has represented clients from several countries in religious persecution cases. Shaheryar Gill has also served as an expert witness in asylum cases before the United Kingdom’s Immigration and Asylum Tribunal. Shaheryar Gill is a graduate of Handong International Law School in South Korea, where he served as Senior Editor of Joint Regent-Handong Journal of International Law. He received his LL.M. from Regent University School of Law. Shaheryar Gill has also served as an adjunct faculty member at Regent University School of Law, where he has taught Public International Law and guest lectured on National Security Law and Christian Foundations of Law. He is also a Fellow of the Oxford Centre for Study of Law and Public Policy.

Abigail A. Southerland

Senior Litigation Counsel

Abigail Southerland serves as Senior Litigation Counsel with the ACLJ. She specializes in First Amendment litigation and represents clients across the country in both state and federal courts, from complaint through trial and appeal. Abigail obtained a key victory for religious employers in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. She presented oral argument before the court, securing the first decision issued by a U.S. court of appeals since the Supreme Court’s decision in Hosanna-Tabor, that a religious organization’s right to choose its ministers and spiritual leaders free from federal and state government interference – a protection known as the ministerial exception – is a limitation imposed on the government that cannot be waived. Abigail represents a variety of clients including private individuals, non-profit organizations, school boards and local government bodies. Abigail is a 2007 graduate of Regent University School of Law where she served as Managing Editor of the Regent Journal of International Law and authored a note published in the journal addressing the conflict between First Amendment freedoms and antidiscrimination laws.

Michelle Terry

Senior Litigation Counsel

Michelle K. Terry serves as Senior Litigation Counsel for the ACLJ. She is a graduate of Regent University School of Law, where she was a Senior Editor for the Regent University Law Review. Upon graduation, Michelle was awarded the Phi Delta Phi Award from the International Legal Fraternity for Professional Responsibility.

During her time with the ACLJ, Michelle has served as liaison to the European Centre for Law and Justice while assisting ACLJ Senior Fellow and former U.S. Attorney General John D. Ashcroft. Michelle has also worked on cases involving religious liberty issues arising in America’s public schools and institutions of higher education, as well as matters regarding an individual’s freedom of speech in the public square.

Michelle is a member of the South Carolina, Tennessee, and District of Columbia Bars. She is also admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States, as well as various federal district and circuit courts. Michelle holds a Bachelor of Arts from Oklahoma State University.

Government Affairs

Nathanael Bennett

Director of Government Affairs

Nathanael Bennett is the Director of Government Affairs for the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), as well as the Main Representative to the United Nations in New York, NY for the European Centre for Law and Justice (ECLJ). He also assists the ECLJ in its work before the Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland.

In his current capacity, Bennett represents the ACLJ in matters involving Congress and the Executive Branch. This includes serving as a liaison when the ACLJ and Members of Congress share an interest in an issue before the court.

Prior to joining the ACLJ, Bennett served for six years in the office of Congressman Jim Ryun (R-KS), finishing as Legislative Director. He also served on the Transition Team for President George W. Bush.

Bennett holds a Business Management degree from National Louis University, where he graduated summa cum laude.

Miles Terry

Senior Counsel for Government Affairs

Miles Terry is Senior Counsel for Government Affairs for the American Center for Law and Justice. He also previously served as a Representative to the United Nations in New York, NY for the European Centre for Law and Justice (ECLJ).

Terry earned his Juris Doctor from Regent University School of Law in Virginia Beach, VA where he was a member of the James Kent American Inn of Court and the Phi Alpha Delta International Law Fraternity, George Washington Chapter. He holds a Master’s Degree in Political Science with an emphasis in Early American Political Thought from Appalachian State University and Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of South Carolina.

Terry is admitted to practice law in The State of South Carolina, The State of Tennessee, the District of Columbia, and various Federal District and Circuit Courts.

He is also admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States.