Faculty Profile: Sonya Bellafant

Sonya BellafantLegal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands
Current TBA Courses
Biography

Sonya Bellafant is the Director of the Tennessee Senior Law Alliance (TSLA) under the umbrella of the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands in Nashville, TN. She is originally from Detroit, Michigan and she is a graduate of Michigan State University College of Law; she also earned her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism through Oakland University.  She is licensed to practice law in Michigan, Tennessee and Illinois. While a law student, Sonya was the Assistant Director for the Michigan Pension Rights Project.  There she assisted seniors and Michigan residents by investigating and securing pension benefits.  After clerking for the United States Attorney’s Office, Sonya focused on enforcing, advancing and defending the legal rights of low income and vulnerable families.  She has worked with several legal programs in Michigan including the Legal Aid of Western Michigan, Legal Aid & Defender, Legal Services of the Eastern Michigan and U.AW. Legal Services.  Before relocating to Tennessee in 2015, she advocated on behalf of seniors in Wayne County, Michigan, to address a host of legal issues as the Supervising Attorney for the Free Legal Aid Clinic located at Wayne State University.  Prior to her current position, Sonya was a staff attorney in the Columbia office of the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands. 

The Tennessee Senior Law Alliance (TSLA) is a statewide network of attorneys and other legal professionals who work together to meet the legal needs of Tennessee's most vulnerable senior citizens, creating lasting local impact across all 95 Tennessee counties.  TSLA is comprised of the Tennessee Alliance for Legal Services (TALS), West Tennessee Legal Services (WTLS), Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS), the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands (LASMTC), and Legal Aid of East Tennessee (LAET).  Services include legal representation (provided by staff and volunteer attorneys), walk-in legal advice clinics, publishing educational materials outlining a senior's rights and responsibilities under the law, and presenting educational workshops and seminars at various organizations, including senior centers and faith-based groups.

Prior to becoming an attorney, Sonya worked as an advertising executive for Bozell Worldwide and Campbell Ewald developing media plans to increase sales for clients such as Chrysler, Plymouth Jeep Eagle and General Motors.