Four GW Law Students Awarded Peggy Browning Fellowships

May 20, 2024
L to R: Ted Parker, Rachel Khoury, Zan Weng, and Brad Bainum

Brad Bainum, Rachel Khoury, Ted Parker, and Zan Weng from GW Law have been awarded Peggy Browning Fund (PBF) fellowships in workplace justice advocacy. The application process is highly competitive, and the award is a tribute to their outstanding qualifications. 

This year, the Peggy Browning Fund is proud to announce we have accepted 117 law students into our nationwide fellowship program, the largest cohort in our history! Securing a Peggy Browning  Fellowship is a challenging process, with over 3,950 applications for our 2024 program. As the country continues to face unprecedented challenges to workers’ rights, the fight for workplace justice has never been more pressing. Labor needs lawyers and we are inspired by the passion and dedication this year’s Fellows bring to the movement. These Fellows are distinguished students who have not only excelled in law school but have also demonstrated their commitment to workers’  rights through their previous educational, organizing, work, volunteer, and personal experiences.

Brad Bainum, Class of 2025, will be at Communications Workers of America (CWA) in Washington, DC. Originally from Maryland, Brad is the proud son of a union member and is passionate about workplace democracy and justice. Before law school, he worked for eight years in electoral politics on campaigns across the country, furthering his interest in workers' rights and—for him—underscoring the importance of organizing and building worker power to benefit all. During that time, Brad also saw firsthand how his partner's work organizing two of her workplaces positively impacted her fellow employees. As a law student, he has interned at the NLRB's Division of Judges and volunteered with the Washington Lawyers' Committee's Workers' Rights Clinic. He is a 2014 graduate of Bowdoin College. Brad is excited to be a PBF Fellow this summer and is thrilled to be able to support CWA's important work.

Rachel Khoury, Class of 2026, will be at Farmworker Justice in Washington, DC. Rachel earned a BA in African American Studies and Political Science from the University of Florida  (UF). Her passion for workplace justice began with co-founding Food Justice at UF, a successful student and worker-led divestment campaign urging UF to contract with an ethical food service provider that does not use prison labor and pays campus workers a living wage. Their work and support resulted in tangible changes as UF campus workers formed a lasting union. She has also led fieldwork research trips to accumulate oral interviews documenting migrant farm work and temporary work visas in the Chesapeake region, as well as the Civil Rights Movement, segregation, and labor organizing in the Mississippi Delta with the UF Samuel Proctor Oral History Program. Her experiences working with the Innocence Project, the Orange County Legal Aid, and the Orlando  Center for Justice have fueled her passion to pursue Labor law. She will be the first lawyer in her family. 

Ted Parker, Class of 2026, will be at Drivers Union WA, Affiliated with Teamsters 117 in  Tukwila, WA. Ted’s entry into the labor movement came from an unlikely source: getting a PhD in  Classics. Shortly after arriving in Toronto to begin his graduate studies, Ted voted with his teaching union, CUPE 3902, to go on strike. Picketing through his first Canadian winter with thousands of fellow teachers was an inspiring and transformative experience for him. After graduating, Ted moved to Washington, DC, where he quickly found himself precariously employed at three different institutions all at once, crisscrossing the city each day to get to the next classroom. Having lived the difference between working a dignified, unionized job and unprotected, precarious jobs, Ted decided to go to law school to fight for the former. He is excited to work as a Peggy Browning Fellow with the Drivers Union this summer to help ensure the dignity and security of ride-share workers. 

Zan Weng, Class of 2025, will be at Segal Roitman, LLP in Boston, MA. Zan is a first-generation law student and the son of former textile workers. His commitment to worker’s rights originated in the loading docks of an Amazon Warehouse, where—conversing with co-workers—he realized the extent of workplace abuse in a variety of industries. After witnessing firsthand the management’s comically heavy-handed, but nonetheless successful anti-union campaign, he ventured into the labor movement and applied to law school with the express purpose of pursuing worker-side labor law. He intends to eventually return to Texas to advocate for the workers of his home state. He was previously a Peggy Browning Fellow with the United Food and Commercial  Workers and looks forward to working with Segal Roitman LLP this summer.

This article was originally published by the Peggy Browning Fund.