LaRuby May, born in Pensacola, Florida, to Reverend Theophilus May and Mary J. May, has been a vessel for change for over 30 years. The inspirational lawyer, entrepreneur, developer, teacher and strategist founded the May Jung law firm alongside longtime friend and business partner Je Yon Jung. May Jung’s mission is to unapologetically advocate for people of color and empower them to be whole and active participants in the civil justice system. Before establishing May Jung, LaRuby served as a founding member of May Lightfoot, PLLC. She has extensive experience representing clients in matters from worker’s compensation to complex litigation. She is committed to making sure that her clients receive outstanding representation. LaRuby is a founding board member of Shades of Mass, an organization that aims to rectify inequity and achieve diversity in mass tort and complex litigation case leadership. Her trailblazing does not stop there. LaRuby is a member of the National Bar Association, Women’s Bar Association, National Conference of Black Lawyers, an Eckerd College program series speaker, and a member of the University of the District of Columbia, David Clark School of Law Hall of Fame.
LaRuby was recently appointed by Judge Mary Rowland in the Northern District of Illinois to join Attorney Ben Crump, Fu Zimmerman and 32 other attorneys on the Plaintiff’s litigation team to represent Black and Brown women in the hair relaxer Multidistrict Litigation. Additionally, LaRuby also serves on the Multidistrict Litigation, representing clients who have been injured by the herbicide Paraquat. Previously LaRuby has worked with clients injured by PCBs (Polychlorinated biphenyls), 3M earplugs, and talcum powder. She focuses on identifying and supporting plaintiffs from a grassroots level, including those who are often disproportionately impacted.
LaRuby has developed many properties during her career as a real estate developer and she is especially proud of the 91 unit senior affordable housing project named for civil rights attorney Dovey Johnson Roundtree located in Washington, DC. LaRuby is a Certified General Contractor and uses these skills in developing properties and in representing construction workers harmed on the job. Building lives and developing properties is a legacy LaRuby learned from her parents.
LaRuby has been instrumental in arguing before the D.C. Council on several bills having a broad impact on not only the D.C. area but society as a whole, including the bill to decriminalize prostitution and create equity between public and private worker’s compensation systems. LaRuby spent over 3 years working on and advocating for the Stormiyah Denson Jackson Economic Damages Equality act. Passed unanimously by the DC Council and approved by Congress, this legislation changed the law in DC and removes race and gender discrimination in the calculation of damages in wrongful death and catastrophic injuries cases.
Prior to practicing law, LaRuby served as the Councilmember representing Ward 8 in The District of Columbia. LaRuby was privileged to be elected by and fight on behalf of over 70,000 residents in the most challenged part of the District. Other public services that LaRuby has done include but are not limited to working to improve the quality of life for underserved District Residents as the Chairman of the DC Housing Authority Board of Commissioners, Chairman of United Medical Center Board of Commissioners, the only public hospital in DC and as the Committee Co-Chair of ReOpen DC.
LaRuby received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Eckerd College, her Master of Arts degree from The George Washington University and her Juris Doctorate from the University of the District of Columbia. She is an advocate for change, and a frequent speaker at conferences on topics ranging from economic development, human capitol development, mass torts, diversity, trauma, leadership, business and professional development. Her mission in life is to support, nurture and develop the next generation of Black leaders. LaRuby’s actions and interactions exemplify one of her core beliefs, the greatest privilege in life is to serve.