Jenipher Jones Bonino

Jenipher Jones Bonino

Assistant Director for Community Initiatives

Animal Activist Legal Defense Project


Diversity/Equity/Inclusion, community engagement

Professional Biography

Jenipher is a civil and human rights attorney and Partner and Director of Litigation, Strategy, and Advocacy at O'Connor, Jones, LLC: A People's Law Firm.  Known for her fair but sharp litigation strategy, Jenipher’s work challenging the system of mass incarceration have resulted in binding affirmative law regarding the constitutional rights of prisoners in the U.S. Jenipher litigates complex civil litigation cases involving employment discrimination, law enforcement/correctional officer misconduct, and prisoners’ rights. She has successfully litigated Lovelace v. Clarke, Rodgers v. Christie, Jackson v. Dozier, Bacote v. Federal Bureau of Prisons, and Ajaj v. Federal Bureau of Prisons. She has been published in both domestic and international publications. Jenipher has also advocated for the rights of prisoners in the United States before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, The United Nations Association, and the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

Jenipher graduated from HBCU, Bennett College for Women, with a B.A. in Political Science with honors. She then attended law school at Loyola University New Orleans College of Law with membership to the Loyola Maritime Journal Law Journal, The International Legal Honor Society of Phi Delta Phi, and clinical study.

Jenipher began her career in civil and human rights as a Fellow at the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship of Harvard University at the Southern Poverty Law Center. Jenipher has worked on law enforcement accountability issues, including a clerkship at the civilian law enforcement oversight agency, the City of New Orleans Office of the Independent Police Monitor (OIPM), and a landmark federal consent decree involving the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD). She has also practiced at the National Employment Litigation Unit (NELU) of the United States Postal Service handling class action employment discrimination matters.

Jenipher also works in legal education and is a member of the Executive Committee for the American Association of Law Schools (AALS), Balance Section and Scholarship Committee, she promotes diversity and wellness in the legal profession, particularly among law students and lawyers of color. Jenipher is also active in the community and serves as the Co-Chair of Colorado Women’s Bar Association (CWBA) Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee, Co-Chairs the National Lawyers Guild Mass Incarceration Committee, and is member to the Executive Committee of the Project for Integrating Law, Spirituality, and Politics (PISLAP). She is also the lead counsel for the Jailhouse Lawyers Speak International Law Project. As Jenipher values the arts and culture, she is a member of the Denver Art Museum-Culture Haus and Botanic Gardens. Both a civil rights and integrative law lawyer, she is a graduate of the Center for Action and Contemplation’s Living School, is trained as to both contemplative and interfaith practices, and as an Advisory Board member to Journey Space supports plant medicine healing.


JD, Loyola University New Orleans College of Law
BA, Bennett College for Women