Lia Ernst of Vermont ACLU Joins NEFAC Board of Directors

CONTACT Justin Silverman | 774.244.2365 |

The New England First Amendment Coalition is pleased to announce the addition of Lia Ernst, a staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union of Vermont, to its Board of Directors.

“We’re very excited to have Lia join NEFAC and help our efforts defending the First Amendment in Vermont,” said Justin Silverman, the coalition’s executive director. “She’s going to be a tremendous resource not only for our organization but for all New Englanders.”

At the ACLU of Vermont, Ernst litigates civil liberties, civil rights and open government cases; advocates before state and municipal governmental bodies on ACLU legislative priorities; and educates community groups on protecting and exercising their rights.

Before coming to the Vermont affiliate, Ernst had been a legal fellow at the ACLU of Massachusetts and a legal intern at the ACLU of Michigan. She also clerked for two years with U.S. District Court Judge Julian Abele Cook Jr. in Detroit and for one year with Judge Norman H. Stahl of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in Boston. In between, she was an associate attorney at a Michigan law firm outside Detroit, focusing on criminal defense and attorney ethics. 

Ernst is a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School and holds a master’s degree in anthropology from the University of Wisconsin. Her undergraduate degree is from Swarthmore College, where she majored in biology. She served two years in the Peace Corps in Guinea, West Africa after college.


NEFAC was formed in 2006 to advance and protect the Five Freedoms of the First Amendment, including the principle of the public’s right to know. We’re a broad-based organization of people who believe in the power of an informed democratic society. Our members include lawyers, journalists, historians, academics and private citizens.

Our coalition is funded through contributions made by those who value the First Amendment and who strive to keep government accountable. Donations can be made here. Major Supporters of NEFAC for this year include The Robertson Foundation, Lois Howe McClure, The Boston Globe and Boston University. Celebration Supporters include The Hartford Courant and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.