Ela Matthews, Senior Staff Attorney, is a civil litigator based in San Francisco, California, with experience in human rights implementation both in the U.S. and internationally. She has made submissions at all levels of federal court in the U.S., including the Supreme Court of the United States. Ela represents victims and survivors of atrocity crimes in U.S. courts and international and regional bodies. She works on global advocacy on access to justice and the right to remedy for torture and other gross human rights violations. Prior to joining CJA, Ela contributed to drafting the UN Committee Against Torture’s General Comment Number 3 – on States obligation to ensure redress for victims of torture. She collaborated with civil society on shadow reports regarding States’ compliance with human rights obligations and individual complaints to UN treaty bodies, and with UN Special Rapporteurs on country visits and thematic reports.
Ela began her legal practice as a litigation associate at White & Case LLP in New York, where she represented clients in complex civil litigation and regulatory investigations. At White & Case, Ela also represented survivors of human trafficking and gender-based violence in federal and state courts. She advised international non-profits on advocacy strategies and worked as a research assistant for the Special Representative on Gender Issues to the Organization on Security and Co-operation in Europe. Ela received her JD from Columbia University and graduated with an LL.B. in Law from Kings College at the University of London.