J. Denise Diskin

Executive Director

Get in touch with Denise about partnership opportunities, strategic initiatives, or volunteer opportunities!

(206) 483-2725

denise@qlawfoundation.org

Denise Diskin joins the QLaw Foundation as its first Executive Director after nearly ten years of legal practice representing individuals harmed by discrimination, with a particular focus on cases impacting individuals with multiple marginalized identities.  As an advocate, she enjoys working in partnership with her clients, creating strategies together and working to build individual and community power through informed legal decision-making.  She is a frequent speaker on employment discrimination, healthcare coverage for transgender and nonbinary people, and LGBTQ access to the legal system.

Before her legal career, Denise worked for several years as a labor organizer, teacher, and community arts program volunteer coordinator and events manager, and served as the Community Outreach Editor of the Hastings Race and Poverty Law Journal.  She has a long volunteer history with the QLaw Foundation, starting in 2009 as a member of the LGBT Legal Clinic Committee, which she went on to chair from 2011 to 2013.  She then started the LGBT Legal Clinic’s partner clinic with Ingersoll Gender Center and served for several years on the Sher Kung Summer Fellowship Committee.  She has lived in Santa Cruz, St. Louis, rural Missouri, Baltimore, and San Francisco, but in 2008 found her forever home in the Puget Sound.  She enjoys riding her bike, hiking with her kiddo, and cheering on Reign FC, Seattle’s outstanding professional women’s soccer team.

Publications and Media

  • Woods v. Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission, November16, 2017; KIRO TV; The Stranger
  • KUOW’s The Record, regarding auto-conversion of state-registered domestic partnerships to marriages, May 8, 2014.
  • So Am I Married Now, Or What?  Seattle Gay News, February 21, 2014.
  • Finding legal answers post-DOMA: Local lawyers recognized for pro-bono efforts The Capitol Hill Times, September 12, 2013.
  • Identity Documents 101, Gendercast, Podcast Episode 32, October 22, 2012.
  • Taking it to the Bank: Actualizing Health Care Equality for San Francisco's Transgender City and County Employees, 5 Hastings Race & Poverty L. J. 129 (Winter 2008).


Professional Honors, Leadership and Memberships

  • Washington State Bar Association
  • Washington Leadership Institute, 2018 Fellow
  • Washington Employment Lawyers Association CLE Committee (2015-2018)
  • Co-Chair/Member, QLaw Foundation Sher Kung Summer Fellowship Committee (2015-2018)
  • Washington State SuperLawyers - Rising Star (2014-2018)
  • Washington Won’t Discriminate Legal Committee (2017)
  • National LGBT Bar Association Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40 (2016)
  • Community Leadership Award, Ingersoll Gender Center (2015)
  • QLaw Foundation Inaugural “Volunteer of the Year” Award (2015)
  • Latina/o Bar Association of Washington Legal Clinic Volunteer Attorney (2015)
  • QLaw Foundation Board of Directors (2011-2013)
  • Chair, GLBT Legal Clinic Committee (2010-2013)


Education

  • J.D., University of California, Hastings College of the Law
  • B.A., University of California, Santa Cruz, with honors