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Rachel Rutter

Rachel Rutters Honoree Profile V3

Rachel Rutter is the founder and executive director of Project Libertad, an organization empowering newcomer immigrant youth and their families by providing essential youth-led and youth-centered legal and social services.

While serving as a Staff Attorney representing immigrant children in removal proceedings at HIAS Pennsylvania, Rutter, a passionate advocate for immigrant children's rights, was compelled to launch Project Libertad. What started out as a passion project turned into a full-fledged organization, when she decided to leave her full-time job to focus solely on its development in early 2020.

The organization’s offerings are multifaceted— providing essential legal representation for free or at a low cost to youth facing deportation, mental health services in partnership with Immigrant Psychology Network, Newcomer Support Programs to create a safe space for recently arrived youth, and more.

Today, Project Libertad has a global footprint, reaching youth from Haiti, Brazil, Vietnam, China, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Bangladesh, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador and more.

Rutter has also served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Costa Rica and an Equal Justice Works JusticeAmeriCorps Fellow at HIAS Pennsylvania. She recognizes the impact her work has on underserved youths and strives every day to reach just one more child in need of help.

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