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Casey Burke is the Executive Director of CLIMB.  Originally from Charlottesville, Virginia, Casey started her legal career in the Bronx, New York, as a criminal defense attorney.  She represented thousands of clients who could not afford to retain legal counsel accused of all levels of criminal defenses, from low-level misdemeanors to homicides.  During her tenure at the Legal Aid Society of New York City, she handled more than a dozen jury trials, and became extremely passionate about social justice issues, particularly issues of racial inequity in incarceration and the criminal justice system.  After eight years as a public defender, Casey went to work for a boutique medical malpractice firm in Manhattan.

In 2019, Casey and her family relocated to Charlotte, her new home.  She returned to criminal defense and then moved to the Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy, where she was the Managing Attorney for the Pro Bono Unit.  In that capacity, Casey developed training and resources materials, then recruited and supervised private attorneys in representing the Advocacy Center’s clients.  In this role, Casey worked closely with staff attorneys, pro bono attorneys, and clients, and developed a passion for leveraging the private bar to close the access to justice gap for underserved clients.  This work led her to CLIMB, where she continues the mission of expanding access to much needed legal resources, ordinarily out of reach to many members of the community. 

Casey believes that access to legal services can be the key to a business’s success and sustainability, and yet for many, these services are financially unattainable.  Her goal is for CLIMB to provide a way for traditionally marginalized entrepreneurs to overcome these barriers and create vibrant businesses, thereby creating a more equitable community.


In her free time, Casey enjoys spending time with her husband and five year old daughter.  She enjoys spending time outdoors, including hiking and camping, and watching college basketball.  On the weekends you can find her coaching her daughter’s basketball team, walking her dog Tango, reading, trying to learn Spanish, and cooking unnecessarily elaborate meals.  She loves living in Charlotte because it has all of the amenities of a large city with the charms of a small town, and is a quick drive to both the mountains and the beach.



Juris Doctorate        Northeastern University School of Law

                                Boston, Massachusetts, 2008.  

Bachelor’s of Arts    University of Virginia

                                Charlottesville, Virginia, 2002.  




North Carolina

New York 

United States District Court Southern District of New York 

United States District Court Southern District of New York

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