Patricia Sully joined UW Tacoma in late August of 2019 after five years with the Seattle-based Public Defender Association, most recently serving as that organization’s policy director. The PDA is a nationally-renowned non-profit that advocates for justice-system reform in King County informed by many of the values that we share: social and racial equity, and community-engaged advocacy. While at the PDA, Patricia has led the creation of VOCAL-WA, which supports legal system advocacy campaigns chosen and led by grassroots community leaders.
She is a 2011 J.D. graduate, magna cum laude, of Seattle University School of Law, where she has also served as an adjunct professor and as assistant director of the Access to Justice Institute. An alum of the Peace Corps (Botswana), Patricia is licensed to practice law in both Washington and New York State.
In her role at UW Tacoma, Patricia provides leadership for Legal Pathways' initiatives and programs, and accommodates student advising and mentoring, pipeline development, event management and other components of the program. She works closely with faculty and builds relationships with community partners throughout the South Sound, including the Legal Pathways Community Advisory Board (LPCAB). She also develops and delivers pre-law learning content through teaching and special projects and events, and oversees the day-to-day activities of the program.
Chris Demaske, Ph.D, Faculty Coordinator
Dr. Demaske’s research explores issues of power associated with free speech and free press, resulting in a theoretical and analytical critique of First Amendment applications in areas including hate speech, Internet pornography, political dissidence, reporters rights, and academic freedom. The bulk of her research has focused on exploring the complicated relationship between the First Amendment and culturally disempowered groups in the United States. This research culminated in the publication of several articles and her first book, Modern Power and Free Speech: Contemporary Culture and Issues of Equality. Her recent research projects include the development of a constitutional argument for the protection of academic freedom, a critique of the quickly evolving government speech doctrine, and a re-evaluation of hate speech laws in relation to Internet hate speech. In addition to my scholarship focusing on First Amendment issues, she also has presented work comparing Russian and U.S. media.
Ali Modarres, Ph.D, Assistant Chancellor for Community Partnerships
Ali Modarres is the Director of Urban Studies at University of Washington Tacoma. He is the editor of Cities: The International Journal of Urban Policy and Planning and serves on a number of research and policy advisory boards. Dr. Modarres earned his Ph.D. in geography from the University of Arizona and holds master and bachelor degrees in landscape architecture from the same institution. He specializes in urban geography and his primary research and publication interests are socio-spatial urban dynamics. He has published in the areas of social geography, immigration, urban development and planning policy.