Denisse O. Gastélum is an associate at Casillas & Associates, where she practices law in the areas of civil rights and catastrophic injury. Ms. Gastélum was born in East Los Angeles into an immigrant family from Chihuahua and Sinaloa, México. Having come from humble beginnings, her commitment to advocating on behalf of those harmed by civil rights violations and catastrophic injuries comes naturally.
Ms. Gastélum completed her undergraduate studies at UCLA, where she majored in Psychology and minored in Political Science and Education. She then embarked upon her legal studies at Loyola Law School, where she served as a mentor for the Academic Support Program, a debate coach for the Johnnie Cochran Middle School Debate Program, a member of the review team for For People of Color, Inc., and a law clerk for The Cochran Firm.
Ms. Gastélum serves as the President-Elect of the Latina Lawyers Bar Association. Throughout her tenure with LLBA, Ms. Gastélum has served in the capacity of Secretary, Dinner Chair and Scholarship Chair. She is also a founding member of the LLBA Young Lawyers Committee.
Ms. Gastélum is also the President of the Mexican American Bar Association. During Ms. Gastélum’s tenure with MABA, she has served as the President-Elect, Vice President, Treasurer, and Trustee. The accomplishments of her tenure include building coalitions with minority bar associations to organize townhalls geared towards providing community leaders with tools to protect vulnerable communities under the Trump Administration; securing a partnership with the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, wherein volunteers provide free legal services through legal clinics and naturalization and Know Your Rights workshops; introducing the MobileCause fundraiser, which has proven to be a reliable means to raise funds necessary for MABA’s Federal Judicial Externship Program and High School Scholarship Program.
She also serves on the Board of Governors of the Consumers Attorneys Association of Los Angeles. Ms. Gastélum previously served as mentor for Motivating Our Students Through Experience, a non-profit organization geared towards mentoring young girls enrolled in middle schools and high schools located in underserved communities. Over the years, Ms. Gastélum has been invited to serve as a panelist on various panels regarding the practice of law and career advice.