Career Center Team
Lydia Russo, Assistant Dean
Since 2012 Lydia Russo has overseen a transformation of Emory Law School's Center for Professional Development & Career Strategy from a traditional law school career services office into a student-focused Career Center. Her talented, dynamic team provides customized career planning to students based on their own unique interests.
Lydia brings a decade of legal education experience to the Career Center. After an accomplished tenure as a commercial real estate lawyer at Rogers Towers, PA in Jacksonville, Florida, Lydia found her passion bridging students’ law school experiences with their professional aspirations. Following her passion, Lydia went on to serve as the Associate Director for Career Services at both Roger Williams University School of Law and Florida Coastal School of Law before joining Emory. She received her JD with honors from the University of Florida College of Law where she served as an executive editor on the Florida Law Review, and her BA magna cum laude in psychology from Bates College.
Laura Yearout, Senior Director
Laura Yearout manages the administrative staff of the Career Center. She is responsible for Emory Law's recruitment programs and directs the communications for the office. She also advises alumni and visiting students. Before returning to her native Atlanta in 2007, she was a career counselor for Tulane Law School, spearheading Tulane’s Judicial Clerkship Program. She also worked as director of employer relations/externship program supervisor for University of Florida Levin College of Law, Office of Career Services. Laura earned her JD from Tulane Law School and her BA in anthropology from the University of New Orleans.
Michelle Valteau, Senior Director
In addition to advising students, Michelle Valteau prepares and presents educational programming on various career-related topics. Prior to joining the Career Center in 2009, Michelle practiced as a real estate finance associate in the Atlanta offices of Stites & Harbison PLLC and Thompson Hine LLP. Michelle earned her JD from Duke University School of Law and her BA in political science from Wellesley College.
Ragi Soto, Director
Ragi Soto is an advisor and presents educational programming. Before joining Emory Law in 2009, Ragi was an executive legal recruiter with Lucas Group’s Atlanta office. She began her career in legal recruiting as a Partner Practice Specialist and Client Relations Specialist with Major, Lindsey & Africa’s New York office. Prior to recruiting, she was the director of student activities with the City University of New York School of Law. Ragi earned her JD from Emory University School of Law and her BA in anthropology and political science, summa cum laude, from the State University of New York at Albany.
Lauren Brown, Director
Lauren Brown enjoys working closely with students to determine their professional goals and create personalized career search strategies. In addition, she oversees Emory Law Career Center’s professional development programming. Lauren advises several practice societies, working with student leaders to connect their memberships with practitioners in the legal community. Prior to joining the Career Center in 2011, Lauren practiced in the financial institutions group at Bryan Cave LLP (formerly Powell Goldstein LLP), where she was a member of the firm’s hiring and associates committees and managed the firm’s associate mentor program. She received her JD from Vanderbilt University Law School and her BA in psychology from the University of Michigan.
Sarah Svensen Bennah, Director
Sarah Bennah is a career advisor and adjunct professor at Emory Law. In addition to advising individual students, Sarah created and teaches Professional Narrative, the Career Center’s first for-credit professional development course. Sarah is also certified in the Myers Briggs Type Indicator and runs Project Know Thyself, which is designed to help students identify their unique professional strengths, interests, and values as they move forward with their career searches. Sarah also serves as advisor to several student-run practice societies and, each summer, teaches in the Kessler-Eidson Trial Techniques Program. Prior to joining Emory Law’s Career Center, Sarah clerked for the Honorable Julie E. Carnes in the Northern District of Georgia, and she practiced commercial litigation at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP and Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Freidman LLP in New York City. Sarah received her BA from the University of Arizona, summa cum laude, and her JD from Harvard Law School, cum laude.
Emily Bramer, Director
Emily Bramer advises recent graduates and is the assistant director of the Emory Law Fellowship Program. Before joining Emory Law in 2012, Emily was an associate with Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP, where her practice focused on toxic tort litigation, and Fields Howell Athans & McLaughlin, LLP, where she handled coverage disputes and professional liability claims for insurers. Emily earned her JD, with honors, from Emory University School of Law and her BA in political science, summa cum laude, from the University of Kentucky.
Emily Liu, Director and Manager of Diversity & Inclusion
Emily Liu advises students and creates professional development programming. As the office’s Manager of Diversity & Inclusion, Emily also develops and oversees the Career Center’s diversity and inclusion initiatives, goals, and programs. She is the office’s dedicated liaison to Emory Law’s affinity groups, legal employers, and professional affinity groups/bar associations. Prior to joining Emory Law's Career Center, Emily practiced as a real estate associate in the New York office of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. Through Skadden's pro bono program, Emily externed at The Legal Aid Society where she represented clients in the Civil Practice's Harlem Community Law Office in a variety of matters. She also volunteered at Brooklyn Family Defense Project where she provided representation to low income parents in child welfare cases in Brooklyn Family Court. Emily received a BA from Ithaca College and a JD from the University of Michigan Law School.
Lori Garrett, Associate Director
Lori Garrett partners with students to assist them in developing individualized career strategies for achieving their professional goals. She also provides support for the various educational programs and initiatives of the Career Center. Prior to joining Emory Law, she worked for the Minority Corporate Counsel Association as Vice President and Managing Director, SE Region, and practiced corporate and commercial real estate law at Weissman Nowack Curry & Wilco, P.C. and McGuireWoods LLP. She received her JD from the University of Southern California Gould School of Law, and her BA in psychology and Spanish from the Spelman College.
Garnett Taylor Jr., Manager of Recruiting
Garnett Taylor manages the On/Off Campus Interview Programs and job fairs, job postings and the Symplicity website for the Career Center. He handles all of the office finances and metrics reporting, library resources, and Symplicity inquiries from students and staff. Garnett earned his BA in criminal justice from Florida A&M University and MS in Accounting from Keller Graduate School of Management of DeVry University. He joined Emory Law School in 2012.
Leonard Lamb, Administrative Assistant
Leonard Lamb coordinates all programs and plans events for the Career Center's 23 student practice societies. He works with other universities to process reciprocity requests, and he also assists with managing the Career Center's social media pages, schedules all advisor appointments and handles logistics for meetings and special events. Leonard joined the Career Center in 2015 after working at Emory Autism Center as their Assistant Program Coordinator. He brings management skills from several sectors, having coordinated programs in both public and private organizations.