Welcome to your P.E.E.R. Group
P.E.E.R. Group is a neighborhood nonprofit law firm that addresses issues at the intersection of climate, environmental, economic, and social justice. Through a community lawyering approach, we advocate for and seek to effectuate change alongside marginalized and impacted communities, nonprofits, green entities, and educational institutions vested in furthering economic and environmental sustainability. We seek to shift power and to build resilient communities through systemic change using policy resources, education, interdisciplinary research, impact litigation, and direct legal services.
Theresa Pinto, Esq., M.S.
Senior Staff Attorney
My journey to lawyering and advocacy has not followed a “traditional” path. I studied Religion and Biology as an undergraduate and first-generation college student at Florida International University where I worked as a research associate. As a Ph.D. candidate in the Environmental Science, Policy and Management program at the University of California, Berkeley, I continued my research into fungal genetics, but left to translate scientific research into action, knowing that the solutions to environmental problems were about more than ecology and science, but also about people and planet . With my Master of Science degree in Environmental Science, Policy and Management, I worked in regulatory compliance for the U.S. Department of Agriculture while also working as a science educator and volunteer community organizer. During this time, I began raising a family in the Miami area and felt the growing awareness of the interconnection between environmental and social justice. Feeling yet again there was a better way to advocate for the environment and its most vulnerable populations, I entered law school at the University of Miami School of Law, where I honed my legal skills and expanded my view of environmental law and justice. I joined La Gringa Aplatanada as an Associate in 2020, then led the transition to P.E.E.R. Group in 2021. I remain an educator as adjunct faculty at the University of Miami in the Ecosystem Science and Policy program and in the School of Law's Environmental Justice Clinic.
Abigail Fleming, Esq.
Senior Staff Attorney
As a community lawyer, I seek to address municipal
policies and practices that adversely and disproportionately affect the well-being of vulnerable communities. My
work sits at the intersection of civil rights, environmental, poverty, and public health law, tackling issues in South
Florida including climate change, contamination, environmental health, and municipal equity. I received a
B.A. in Political Science from Georgia College and State University and my J.D. from the University of Miami
School of Law. Prior to joining P.E.E.R. Group, I served
with various nonprofits in Asia and North America to
combat the effects of poverty. My experiences cemented
my desire to become a lawyer to advocate for and
empower disenfranchised communities. In addition
to my advocacy with P.E.E.R. Group, I also lead the Environmental Justice Clinic at the University of Miami
School of Law as the Mysun Foundation Practitioner in Residence.
Shirley Kennedy, M.B.A.
Staff Litigation Paralegal
I returned to school as an adult and received my Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, with an emphasis on Creative Writing, from Agnes Scott College in 1996. After graduation, I returned to legal work, and during my tenure with the federal court, earned an MBA in 2007 in Public Administration from the University of Phoenix. I have worked in the legal field for over 30 years in several areas of the law, but litigation is my specialty. I enjoy the fast pace, the complexities, and helping clients to navigate what can sometimes be a daunting process. I am a member of the National Association of Legal Assistants and the American Bar Association. Through these organizations, I continue my legal education, which allows me to keep up with changes in the law and the legal field in general. I had the amazing opportunity to use my legal skills to assist those in need as a litigation paralegal at Southern Poverty Law Center. My work focused on some of society’s most vulnerable—children—and I strive to expand my contributions in ways through which I can continue to make the world better.
In addition to legal work, I have worked in public relations and write political analyses for a website. This work gives me a voice through which I continue advocating for justice and equity for everyone regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, age, and all other barriers which society places on those who fail to fit into preconceived notions of who we are and our places in the world. As a woman of color, justice and equity have always been in the forefront of everything I do. We have been left out of many facets of society for far too long, and we have many contributions to make that will help to shape the world in which we all live. We have no limits when given equal ground. It is imperative that we are allowed to explore our possibilities as human beings and as members of this society. Through determination and dedication to my work, I hope to contribute to creating a more equitable and just world for all.