Why did you decide to be a lawyer?
I don't remember a distinct decision to become a lawyer; rather I felt drawn to the profession. I applied to law school knowing what kind of lawyer I wanted to be: a solo. I left law school knowing what area of law I was destined to practice: immigration. All the pieces fell together so naturally, that I can't help but think, "this is what I was meant to do."
What work experience and education helps you be a better lawyer?
I owe much of what I know to an excellent immigration practice class I took in law school, a legal internship at Pittsburgh Refugee and Immigrant Assistance Center and a immigration fellowship at the International Institute of the Bay Area. I was able to learn about immigration by doing immigration work for people who could not afford private attorneys.
After law school I spent a year in private practice doing different types of law. This time allowed me to see how an office operates, how to handle difficult issues on short notice and prepare me to open my own office.
Immigration has always felt so right. I think it takes my best assets as an attorney and lets me use the skills to help others. Who can ask more of a profession?
What do you like best about being a lawyer?
Meeting interesting people. Solving legal problems together. The thrill and joy in receiving an acceptance notice for the green card, citizenship, etc.
I wouldn't be an immigration lawyer if I didn't love different cultures -- so I LOVE to travel. I tote my camera with me, a good book, and look for the best gluten free restaurants food (I'm gluten intolerant). I currently reside in Dublin, California, with my husband (a mathematician) and daughter (a precocious preschooler).
Cash, Check, Credit card
|Award name||Grantor||Date granted|
|Attorney Honor Roll||Lawyer's Commitee for Civil Rights||2012|
|Pro Bono Award - Immigration||Duquesne Law Schol||2008|
|Partner||Elliott & Davis, PC||2015 - Present|
|Attorney||SKBERRY Immigration Law||2010 - 2015|
|Immigrant Rights Fellow||International Institute of the Bay Area||2009 - 2010|
|Associate||PFD Law||2008 - 2009|
|Legal Intern||PRIAC||2008 - 2008|
|Association name||Position name||Duration|
|Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights||Pro Bono Assylum Attorney||2011 - Present|
|Eastern Alameda County Bar Association||Member||2010 - Present|
|J. Reuben Clark Law Society||Member||2008 - Present|
|American Immigration Lawyers Association||Member||2008 - Present|
|Pennsylvania Bar Association||Member||2008 - 2010|
|Duquesne University School of Law||Law||JD - Juris Doctor||2008|
|Brigham Young University||N/A||BA||2004|
|5 Steps to Citizenship||Citizenship and Naturalization||2010|