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Tanya Douglas

Manhattan Legal Services
Disability Director
New York NY
Tanya Douglas is the director of the Disability Advocacy Project (DAP) and Veterans Justice Project coordinator at Manhattan Legal Services (MLS), a program of Legal Services NYC (LSNYC). Tanya is a graduate of Cornell University and Cornell Law School and is admitted to the Southern District of New York and the Eastern District of New York. Tanya has spent her entire 26-year legal career as an LSNYC public interest attorney who represented clients in Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) SSI/SSDI benefits claims, special education matters, and veteran issues. She has also offered trainings in these areas. Tanya focuses on diversity and cultural competency matters for legal services/legal aid programs. She is the first chair of the LSNYC Diversity Committee, which worked on recruitment and retention issues, drafted an exit interview form and offered training on cultural competency at LSNYC, locally in New York State, and at national conferences. Tanya is a member of the LSNYC Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI) committee, which created the first-ever LSNYC DEI strategic plan. This plan includes DEI trainings, using a DEI lens for substantive work, and recognizes the importance of self-care. Tanya is the co-facilitator of the New York State Legal Services/Legal Aid Diversity Coalition, whose mission is to increase diversity in legal services/legal aid staff and increase their cultural competency. The Coalition has offered training on cultural competency, language access issues at local and national conferences, and provided professional development opportunities. She is a member of the design team for Management Information Exchange (MIE). As an MIE trainer, Tanya has offered trainings for managers on such topics as culturally competency, supervision across racial and gender differences, and basic management tools.