Mikaela has more than 20 years of legal experience and began her legal career in law firms in Washington, DC, and New York City, focusing on labor and employment law and commercial litigation. She also worked on immigration matters on a pro bono basis. Earlier in her career, Mikaela worked for Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organizations implementing democracy and human rights programs in the Middle East, Africa, and Central Asia.

In 2010, Mikaela moved back to Massachusetts, where she grew up, and began working for the city of New Bedford. She started in the mayor’s office, handling a variety of subject matters, including education, commercial fishing, and environmental remediation.

In 2014, Mikaela was appointed by the mayor as City Solicitor, or chief legal officer, a position she held until 2022. As City Solicitor, Mikaela oversaw all of the city’s legal work and regularly advised the mayor, boards and commissions, and other city personnel on a wide range of legal issues. She oversaw numerous significant matters during her tenure, including complex environmental litigation that resulted in more than $10 million in settlement payments to the city, high-stakes litigation with the city’s solid waste hauler, and the city’s legal responses to a ransomware attack and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mikaela launched her law firm in 2023 and concentrates her practice on workplace investigations, workplace advice, immigration law, and legal research and writing. She also serves as a hearing officer for the Massachusetts Health Connector and has adjudicated dozens of appeals concerning individual eligibility for health insurance plans and subsidies.

In June 2023, Massachusetts Governor Maura T. Healey appointed Mikaela to serve on the 27-member Judicial Nominating Commission (JNC).

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