Member Spotlight – Laina Balafas

Laina Balafas is one of the current JLDOC Provisional Advisors. As a provisional advisor, she helps new League members become trained as League volunteers and oriented in League operations and communications.

Laina herself joined the JLDOC in spring 2014 in order to connect with her community and meet new friends. Although she grew up in Chapel Hill, she moved away for college. When she came back, many of her friends had moved away, and it was almost like she had moved to a completely new town. The JLDOC was a great way for her to become reacquainted with the area.

The JLDOC has exceeded Laina’s expectations. A variety of volunteer opportunities through “Extra Hands” events has helped her feel more connected with the community. Working with TABLE, Inc. in Carrboro has been her favorite experience, as the organization directly helps students in the school district she grew up in.

Laina has also met many of her best friends through the JLDOC, and she encourages those who are considering membership to take the plunge. Although it may feel scary, she provides assurance to prospective members: “When I joined, I didn’t know anyone else that was thinking of joining or even in the league, so I stepped way outside of my comfort zone and went to the Wine & Cheese Social to see what it was all about. A small conversation with the girls sitting near me made me realize they were all in the same boat.”

Here are some “fun facts” about Laina:

  • Occupation: Recruitment Manager in the Career Development Office at the UNC School of Law
  • Family: Boyfriend Matt and an unnamed goldfish
  • Favorite restaurant in Durham or Orange County: So many good choices in this area! Bin 54 for sure, also Nanataco, The Yogurt Pump (“YoPo”), and Chirba Chirba Dumpling Truck
  • Best book you’ve read recently: Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
  • Best movie you’ve seen recently: Manchester by the Sea and Sully
  • Favorite sports team(s): Carolina Tar Heels and South Carolina Gamecocks
  • What do you like to do for fun? Go to UNC football and basketball games, travel, sit on a beach or next to a pool, pure barre (though some days that’s more torture than fun!)