Alison Paul has served as MLSA's Executive Director since January of 2011 and is responsible for the overall management and operations of MLSA. Ms. Paul graduated from the University of Kansas School of Law, then spent 7 years in private practice in Chicago. Ms. Paul began her career with MLSA as a staff attorney in 1999, becoming MLSA's Deputy Director in 2003.
In 2014, MLSA Executive Director Alison Paul was selected as a Where Health Meets Justice Fellow by the National Legal Aid & Defender Association, an opportunity to expand MLSA’s presence in medical-legal partnerships. In 2012, Ms. Paul was one of only six legal aid program directors invited to participate in the first White House Forum on civil Legal Aid. In 2005, the National Legal Aid and Defender Association awarded MLSA’s Executive Director Alison Paul the Innovations in Technology Award.
Ms. Paul serves on the Montana Supreme Court Access to Justice Commission, and is Co-Chair of the Technology Section of the National Legal Aid and Defender Association.
Director of Finance and Administration
Lisa Heimbach began at Montana Legal Services Association in 2005. In the past, she served as Finance and Grants Manager, as well as a staff accountant at MLSA. Ms. Heimbach attended Eastern Montana College in Billings, and previously worked at AIRPAGE/Capital Answering Service in Helena.
Director of Litigation
Michael Black joined MLSA in November 2015. Mr. Black is a Montana native with roots extending back four generations. His family moved to the Hi-Line a century ago, and he graduated from Havre High School in 1980. He received his B.A., with high honors, from the University of Montana in 1986 and his J.D. from Cornell University in 1989. After law school, Mike practiced with Lukins & Annis in Spokane and Coeur d'Alene, with Datsopoulos, MacDonald & Lind in Missoula, and as a sole practitioner in Missoula.
Most recently, Mike supervised civil litigation for Montana Attorney General Tim Fox, serving as lead counsel defending constitutional challenges to Montana laws and representing the interests of the State of Montana in other complex litigation.
Director of Strategic Focus and Development
Michelle Potts joined MLSA in September 2013. She graduated from the University of Denver, College of Law, Order of the Coif, then clerked for Justice Marsha K. Ternus on the Supreme Court of Iowa. Ms. Potts served as the Development Director for the Mountain Park Environmental Center in Beulah, Colorado, helping connect children to outdoor experiential science learning and also practiced employee benefits law in Chicago, Illinois and general law in Pueblo, Colorado.