We are delighted to announce that Curt D. Campbell, Jr., former Senior Staff Attorney in the Public Benefits Unit, has become an Administrative Law Judge in the District of Columbia Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH). At OAH, Curt will hear cases involving public space, rent control, professional and business licenses, building, health and fire code violations, and public benefits such as SNAP (Food Stamps), Medicaid and Unemployment Insurance.
Curt joined Legal Aid in 2015 after working for two years in the consumer law unit at the Maryland Legal Aid Bureau. While at Legal Aid, Curt represented hundreds of individuals’ challenging denials of Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, termination or denial of SNAP benefits and reduction in Medicaid-funded home health services, among many other matters. Throughout his career at Legal Aid, Curt often volunteered to take the hardest cases with the most challenging clients. Most recently, Curt had successfully represented clients challenging Social Security application denials at the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia.
Curt also led Legal Aid’s advocacy efforts to eliminate the five-year cap on receipt of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits in the District of Columbia. Soon after joining Legal Aid, Curt became Legal Aid’s representative in a coalition of service providers and advocacy organizations who worked together to convince the D.C. Council and the Bowser Administration not to terminate vital cash assistance for tens of thousands of District families. Curt joined the Administration’s TANF Task Force and spoke movingly about our clients’ need for this support in order to pursue economic stability and how even this (admittedly) small amount of support could change our clients’ lives.
In addition, Curt was an active leader within Legal Aid on racial justice issues, was heavily involved in our community engagement efforts, and played an instrumental role in the founding of Legal Aid’s Community Advisory Council.
Above all, Curt was a kind, thoughtful and engaged colleague who worked well with everyone he encountered at Legal Aid. When he was leaving Legal Aid, colleague after colleague spoke about the impact that Curt had on their lives as well as those of their clients. From providing support on cases to dropping off food and supplies at the home of a colleague who had just had a baby, Curt made Legal Aid a better place.
For all of these reasons and despite the fact that we already miss him, Legal Aid is honored that Curt is now a judge at the Office of Administrative Hearings. We are confident that he will draw upon his extensive substantive knowledge, as well as his compassion, empathy, and patience, to do his best to ensure that, whether or not they have an attorney, everyone who appears before him will obtain justice.
Congratulations to Judge Curt D. Campbell, Jr., and his family on this honor and achievement.