University News

Color of Law Roundtable Discussion Series Explores Career Path with Associate Justice Arose Watson Nielsen

Published: February 28, 2024 | Categories: Law, All News
Associate Justice Arose Watson Nielsen

On Wednesday, March 13, Western New England University (WNE) School of Law will host a distinguished event as part of its Color of Law Roundtable Discussion Series. The session will focus on the career path of Associate Justice Arose Watson Nielsen, who currently serves on the Hampden County Juvenile Court bench.

The event will take place from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m. in the Blake Law Center Faculty Lounge on the university campus. Attendees will have the opportunity to gain insights into Judge Nielsen's career, achievements, and contributions to the legal community.

Nielsen, a Springfield native, assumed her role as an associate justice in the Hampden County Juvenile Court in 2017. Her judicial responsibilities primarily cover cases in Holyoke and North Adams. In addition to her judicial duties, she holds the position of Vice President of the Hon. Harry J. Elam Judicial Conference, formerly known as the Massachusetts Black Judges Conference. Judge Nielsen also serves as the co-chair of the Hampden County Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative.

Judge Nielsen's commitment to public service began in 2001 when she began her career as a staff attorney for Community Legal Aid in Worcester. During her tenure, she conducted outreach and community education, advocating for disenfranchised populations in matters related to homelessness, including housing, discrimination, domestic violence, immigration, and public benefits.

Recognized for her outstanding contributions, Judge Nielsen received the YWCA Katharine F. Erskine Award in 2007 for her work with women and immigrants. Following her time at Community Legal Aid, she became a founding partner at Carvajal and Nielsen, P.C., representing civil litigants in juvenile, probate, housing, and discrimination matters. Additionally, Judge Nielsen served as an adjunct professor at UMASS Lowell.

Judge Nielsen is an alumna of Western New England University School of Law, where she earned her JD. She also holds a BA in Comparative Literature/Russian Language from UMASS Amherst.

The Color of Law Roundtable Discussion Series aims to provide valuable insights into various legal career paths and is open to students, faculty, and legal professionals. Seating for this event is limited, and advanced registration is required. Lunch will be served. To secure your spot, please register at For inquiries, please contact Dr. Bridgette Baldwin at