Meet the Legal Practice Center Staff

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Jean Backes

Jean Backes

Jean initially came to William Mitchell as the legal secretary for students enrolled in client representation clinics, 1994-1999. Returning in 2005, Jean now administers the Clinical and Externship programs. Prior to coming to work at William Mitchell, Jean has worked with the Ramsey County Guardian ad Litem Office in the Juvenile and Family Justice Center in St. Paul. Jean received her Legal Office Administrator diploma from the Minnesota School of Business in Minneapolis, MN.

Lynette Fraction

Lynette Fraction

Lynette joined the William Mitchell staff in January 2011. In her position as Administrative Coordinator, Faculty Support she provides administrative support to faculty, the Indian Law Clinic, the Center for Negotiation and Justice and several programs. Lynette also supports the Warren E. Burger Inn of Court. She enjoys interacting with faculty, students and other staff while utilizing her strong administrative skills assisting with event planning, providing project and database management support, website updates, and travel coordination. Lynette is also a board member of Little Brothers Friends of the Elderly. Before coming to William Mitchell Lynette was the Church Administrator at St. Peter’s AME Church and served as Office Manager/Executive Assistant to the Senior Pastor at Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church.

Sue McKenzie

Sue McKenzie

Sue joined William Mitchell as the Advocacy Program Administrator in 2007.  Before coming to William Mitchell, she was employed as a litigation paralegal.

Sue earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Paralegal Studies from Winona State University.

Jennifer Miller

Jennifer Miller

Jennifer has been part of the Legal Practice Center since 1998. She administers the Legal Practicum: General Practice course, the Advanced Advocacy course, and the Mitchell in London program. Prior to coming to work at William Mitchell, Jennifer worked as an administrative assistant at a law firm, an acute medical center, and a television station. Jennifer received her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of Missouri, Columbia.

Paro Pope

Paro Pope

Paro has been the Administrator of the WRAP program since 2014. She previously worked in higher education supporting a tutor-mentor program, teacher education department, and office of service-learning; and she was the program specialist for AARP.  Paro earned her bachelor’s degree from St. Catherine University.

Linda Thorstad

Linda Thorstad

Linda has been the Administrative Coordinator for the Business Practicum since it began Spring semester 2008. She  joined William Mitchell in 1996 as a Faculty Publication Specialist. In 1999, together with Professor John Sonsteng, she began co-authoring and developing Practicum Exercises for the Legal Practicum and Advanced Advocacy courses.  In 2005, with Sonsteng she co-developed and designed  the Legal Practicum: Business Practice course and co-authored the exercises and teaching materials. Previously, she was a newspaper advertising representative, small business owner, real estate broker, editorial assistant, Geography instructor and published author. Linda continues to be a free-lance writer. She has a B.S. in geography from St. Cloud State University, Minnesota; a M.S. in geography from Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington; and a Ph.D. in cultural geography and American history from Louisiana State University.