Principal, Castillo Law Firm
National President, Hispanic National Bar Association
Nelson Castillo has made an impact at St.
John’s and beyond
Growing up, Nelson Castillo wasn’t surrounded by a family of
lawyers. In fact, he didn’t know any lawyers. But that hasn’t
stopped him from becoming one of the most prominent Hispanic legal
figures in the nation.
After graduating from St. John’s cum laude with a B.S. in
finance, Nelson participated in the School of Law’s Summer
Institute program. As prepared as he was for law school, however,
he was immediately struck by the law school environment.
“I immediately thought, ‘Wow, what an amazing place’. Here were
all these different kinds of people around me, from different parts
of the world with such varied backgrounds. And it was so collegial.
Of course the students were competing, but everyone was so cordial
and friendly and open with one another.”
And it didn’t take long for Nelson to make an impact. He was
involved with the Student Bar Association, he took a leadership
role in the Latin American Law Students Association, and he became
president of the Hispanic National Bar Association’s regional law
“St. John’s did an exceptional job of making opportunities
available. I traveled to ABA conferences across the nation, worked
with incredible people, established and developed a professional
network. The education at St. John’s was top-notch. The preparation
was excellent. The professors went out of their way to take on a
What he appreciates most about St. John’s is its conscience.
Now, nearly 10 years after graduating from the School of Law,
Nelson has ascended to the position of National President of the
Hispanic National Bar Association, overseeing the activities of
38,000 members across the country.
And he’s also enjoying a successful career as an immigration
attorney at his own firm.
“I am so grateful to have gone to St. John’s. The school
encouraged me to become the best lawyer I could be, and then use
what I learned for the benefit of the common good. It’s that kind
of intangible that really sets St. John’s apart.”
To learn more about the opportunities at St. John's from our
Students, Alumni and Faculty, visit our