Manohar Raju is the San Francisco Public Defender and a founding member of Public Defenders for Racial Justice.
A son of immigrants from India, his pursuit of justice is rooted in his acute awareness of the ramifications of social inequalities. Despite coming from a farming village, his parents managed to emigrate to America, where they raised Mano on the East Coast.
Mr. Raju completed his undergraduate degree at Columbia University, and holds a Master’s degree in South Asian Studies from U.C. Berkeley, where he also earned his law degree. He worked as a Deputy Public Defender in Contra Costa County for seven years before he was recruited by Jeff Adachi to join the SF Public Defender’s felony unit in 2008. Due to his impressive practice as a felony line attorney, he was promoted to be the Director of Training and then Manager of the Felony Unit.
Mr. Raju is deeply committed to a client-centered approach to defense work. “Our impact is not measured in numbers, but in the people we represent,” he said. “It’s by the mother who can return home to her family. The son who can continue to work to support his family. And to the children of those we defend, who benefit from having an equal opportunity to survive and who might one day use that opportunity to lead.”
The personal interest he takes in his clients’ lives helps fuel him not only to fiercely litigate and win cases, but also to raise his voice against the inequities he and his clients encounter in the criminal justice system. It has earned him the loyalty of his entire Department and the confidence of Mayor London Breed, who appointed him to fill the post in March 2019. As Public Defender, Mano will continue to uphold the office’s reputation not only as a formidable group of lawyers, but also as a catalyst for criminal justice reform.
Contact: 415-553-9617 or http://sfpublicdefender.org/
Lyslynn Lacoste, is a New York Bar licensed attorney from Boston, Massachusetts. For more than fifteen years, she has diligently served youth through leadership development, mentoring, and juvenile justice reform. Lyslynn began her career in youth development while working closely with local community centers, Boys and Girls Clubs, and Boston Centers for Youth and Families. After witnessing too many young men of color enter the revolving door of the juvenile justice system, she ventured into Suffolk University Law School to focus on juvenile justice reform and prevention. As a law student, Lyslynn honed her skills through meaningful internships at Suffolk’s Juvenile Justice Center and New York’s Legal Aid Society. As the Director of BMAGIC, Lyslynn brings her experience and excitement to continue strengthening the community collaborative and support the the more than 75 community-based organizations, school, faith–based organizations, and city agencies that serve Bayview Hunters Point. She holds a BA in Political Science with a minor in Latin American Studies from Boston University.
Frank Martinez is proud native Californian; he grew up in the small town of Whittier in LA County before moving to San Francisco, where he has lived for over 15 years. Frank has worked for the benefit of others and has helped provide access to healthcare for many over the years. He began working for Children and Family Services of Orange County before moving into healthcare and working to provide quality care and access for the underserved community in the San Francisco Mission District. Along the way he worked in development and was the Community and Volunteer Manager for AIDS Emergency Fund. Most recently he was the program assistant at Mission Neighborhood Health Center, where he assisted the Director in helping provide quality care and access for the most vulnerable populations living with HIV in the San Francisco Mission. He is excited to use and share his expertise for the BMAGIC Program as the Program Coordinator. He looks forward to helping maintain and grow the relationships BMAGIC has with the community to help strengthen, serve and support Bayview Hunters Point.
Community Outreach & Program Assistant
Moira Dumo is the proud mother of two amazing sons and San Francisco native. She attended and graduated from Phillip & Sala Burton Academic High School in 2002. She has previously volunteered for the cleanup and beautification of John McLaren Park, taught Hula and Tahitian dance classes to ages 5 and up, performed and served meals at senior care homes, provided and prepared snacks and meals to elementary students. For over fifteen years, she has managed the operations of several stores within the Bay Area. Most recently employed with Barneys New York in San Francisco, Moira was the Cash Office Operations and Administrative Assistant. As the newly appointed Outreach Assistant for BMAGIC, Moira looks forward to working with all organizations and agencies that strengthen, serve and support Bayview Hunters Point.