In addition to the practice of law, Maha ELKolalli has been involved in the planning and coordinating of several events on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C., including a reception at the Rayburn Center with the assistance of Congressman Keith Ellison, as well as various events at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City.
She is a public speaker presenting at various Colleges/Universities including Nova Southeastern University, Florida Atlantic University, Palm Beach College, Florida International University, and the University of Miami. Ms. ELKolalli is an adjunct Professor at the Shepard Broad Law Center at Nova Southeastern University.
Ms. ELKolalli previously worked as an Associate Attorney with Colodny, Fass, Talenfeld, Karlinsky & Abate litigating cases on behalf of vulnerable individuals in civil rights, personal injury, and systemic reform matters. Cases focused on negligence claims, Florida Statutes section 393.13 claims, wrongful adoption, and wrongful death.
Named as the 2004 Ann Bowden Child Advocate of the Year for the State of Florida while working as a Child Advocate Supervisor at ChildNet, the nonprofit organization selected by the State to manage the system of services and support for Broward County’s abused, abandoned and neglected children and their caregivers, Ms. ELKollali focused on high-risk families, which she helped to navigate through the legal system. She supervised a seven-person staff which provided case management for children who were in the foster care system and/or under protective supervision. Certified as a Family Team Conference facilitator, she used a strength-based approach to ensure that children and families reached permanency within the statutory time frame.
As a former unit supervisor with the Florida Department of Children and Families, Ms. ELKolalli developed extensive court experience in protecting the legal rights of foster children and other vulnerable populations. In addition, she actively facilitated the transition of case management during Broward County’s privatization of child protective services.
Formerly a Government Analyst for the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice, she conducted quality assurance reviews of that agency’s programs throughout the southern region of Florida to ensure compliance with State statutes and agency standards, while working closely with the State’s Inspector General when non-compliance investigations were warranted.
Ms. ELKolalli also served as Area Children’s Services Director for the YMCA of Broward County, where she gained experience in working with children with special needs. At the YMCA, she directed eight after-care programs and managed over 40 staff members to ensure compliance with statutory requirements and standards set forth by the Broward Children’s Services Counsel, the School Board of Broward County and Florida Department of Children and Families’ Child Care Licensing Agency.
Ms. ELKolalli previously interned with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Office of the Chief Counsel in the area of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, where she researched torture in various parts of the world to assess suitability for asylum. She also prepared cases for denaturalization trials, and researched and prepared court briefs.
She subsequently gained experience in foreclosure law and consumer protection litigation.
While later earning her Juris Doctor, magna cum laude, from Nova Southeastern University, Shepard Broad Law Center, Ms. ELKolalli served as a Certified Legal Intern for the University’s Children and Families Clinic. There, she was involved in all aspects of family law relating to domestic relations cases typically referred by Legal Aid Services of Broward County, such as filing petitions, discovery, and attending mediation and hearings.
A Goodwin Scholarship recipient while at Nova, Ms. ELKolalli was also a senior staff member of the Nova Law Review and a member of the Nova Law Trial Team. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree, summa cum laude, from the University at Albany.
Ms. ELKolalli volunteers her time to Dwyane Wade Sr.’s Propops Foundation, which provides services to youth in high-risk areas through charity shows, basketball camps and children’s clinics. The Foundation focuses on bringing fathers back into their children’s lives.
Ms. ELKolalli has working knowledge of Arabic.
- Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad Law Center, J.D., 2010, magna cum laude
- University at Albany, B.A., 2000, summa cum laude
- Florida Bar
- United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida