Kate Mitchell joined the Pediatric Advocacy Clinic in July 2014 as a clinical teaching fellow. She has more than 13 years of experience practicing poverty law. She previously served as the legal director of the Toledo Medical Legal Partnership for Children (MLPC) at Advocates for Basic Legal Equality in Toledo, Ohio. While with MLPC, she provided training to pediatric medical providers on patient advocacy and social determinants of health, provided legal advocacy to children in poverty and their families, and engaged in systemic policy reform initiatives at the local and state level. Her primary areas of focus were special education, school discipline, and access to health care. Mitchell also worked as a staff attorney with the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago for three years immediately following law school and then joined the staff of the Juvenile Justice Project of Louisiana (JJLP) in New Orleans. At JJPL she worked on juvenile prison condition litigation, represented youth in disposition modification and delinquency proceedings, and engaged in systemic reform initiatives related to improving juvenile indigent defense services and strengthening juvenile competency standards. After Hurricane Katrina, Mitchell worked as a Kramer Fellow at The Public Law Center at Tulane University School of Law focusing on economic and housing revitalization efforts in New Orleans.
Mitchell has presented at local, state, and national conferences on a variety of topics including juvenile competency standards, special education, collaborative interdisciplinary advocacy techniques, and Medicaid regulations impacting child access to healthcare. She was the primary author of the Louisiana Juvenile Defender Trial Practice Manual, published in 2007, and a contributing researcher and writer for the National Juvenile Defender Center publication Principles in Practice: Promoting Accountability, Safety and Fairness in Juvenile Delinquency Proceedings. Her primary research interests relate to the intersection of poverty, health, and legal advocacy, interdisciplinary approaches to advocacy, and the impact of school disciplinary practices on children with disabilities. Mitchell received her BA in sociology, magna cum laude, from Beloit College in Beloit, Wisconsin, and her JD, cum laude, from Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago. She is admitted to practice law in Ohio, Illinois, and Louisiana.