Celia Pistolis


Celia Pistolis is the Chief Legal Officer/General Counsel with Legal Aid of North Carolina and oversees the legal work of Legal Aid NC’s approximately 225 lawyers. Under her direction, the Legal Aid NC appellate teams handle 10-12 appeals annually. She has been with Legal Aid NC and its predecessors since 1983.

In addition to her legal work, she has been an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and at the North Carolina Central University School of Law. She has served as Chair of the Equal Justice Alliance, the collaborative planning and coordination council of providers of civil legal assistance in North Carolina. Also, she has previously served as an advisory member of the NC State Bar’s Authorized Practice Committee.

In 2001, the NC Bar Association recognized her as its Outstanding Legal Services Attorney of the Year and in 2012, the UNC Law Alumni Association presented her with its Distinguished Alumnus Award, the first legal services attorney so recognized.

A native North Carolinian, Pistolis received a BA with Honors in Classics and her JD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.