Deputy Director, University of Maryland SAFE Center for Human Trafficking Survivors
Laura Ardito is the Deputy Director of the University of Maryland SAFE Center for Human Trafficking Survivors. The SAFE Center is a comprehensive direct service, research, and advocacy center focused on human trafficking in Maryland and the metropolitan Washington D.C. area. Ms. Ardito has worked on human trafficking issues for over a decade from a direct services, programmatic, and policy perspective. As a senior associate at Steptoe & Johnson LLP, she built her pro bono practice around legal immigration service provision to survivors of human trafficking and other human rights violations. Prior to her work at Steptoe, Ms. Ardito managed the first Anti-Trafficking program at Vital Voices Global Partnership, an international nonprofit organization focused on women’s leadership. She served as a Legal Fellow at the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, focusing on human trafficking laws and policies, and as an attorney at the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Ms. Ardito has recently been an adjunct professor at Georgetown University, where she taught a class on Women’s International Human Rights. Ms. Ardito is a graduate of Cornell University and American University Washington College of Law.