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Our People

Michael Lissner Headshot

Michael Lissner – Executive Director and CTO

Michael Lissner is a co-founder of Free Law Project and serves as its executive director. Under his leadership, Free Law Project has brought innovation and equity to the legal ecosystem. Free Law Project's strategy of open tools like CourtListener, RECAP, and Bots.law, enable it to impact tens of millions of people each month. Michael is a FastCase 50 Honoree and has been awarded the Public Access to Information Award from the American Association of Law Librarians. He is an endurance athlete, having completed numerous long-distance challenges.

Brian Carver Headshot

Brian Carver – Co-Founder and Board Member

In 2009 and 2010, at the UC Berkeley School of Information, Brian advised Michael Lissner on the creation of CourtListener. After Michael's graduation, he and Brian continued working on the site and have grown the database to include millions of documents. In 2011 and 2012, Brian advised masters students Rowyn McDonald and Karen Rustad on the creation of a legal citator built on the CourtListener database. During 2012 and 2013 he collaborated with computer scientists at UC Santa Cruz on the enhancement of the search capabilities of CourtListener. He continues to support all of Free Law Project's efforts as a member of its Board of Directors.

Ansel Halliburton Headshot

Ansel Halliburton – Board Member

Ansel has been involved in legal technology since 2006, when he joined a team at Stanford Law School to help build a comprehensive database of all federal intellectual property litigation — work that later spun out as Lex Machina. Ansel practiced technology law before co-founding Syntexys, a document analytics software company spun out from A3 by Airbus. Ansel holds degrees from UC Berkeley and UC Davis School of Law, writes about technology and security for Lawyerist, and builds small robots.

Jenifer Whiston Headshot

Jenifer Whiston – Director of Philanthropy

Jenifer joins Free Law Project with over a decade of fundraising, grant writing, and relationship-building experience. She has previously worked in Development and Communications with the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York and YWCA Greater Capital Region. She received her bachelor’s degree from Siena College and a master’s from Long Island University Brooklyn. Jenifer lives in upstate New York with her two rescue dogs and enjoys curling, gardening, hiking, and snowboarding.

William Palin Headshot

William E. Palin – Lead Developer

William is an attorney and software developer that is passionate about technologies role in bridging the Access-to-Justice gap. Prior to joining Free Law Project he was the Access to Justice/Technology Fellow at Harvard Law School, an Adjunct Professor of Law and Technology at Suffolk University in Boston and a practicing attorney.

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