Stacie Jonas--The 2018 Immigration Symposium --Feb. 23, 2018
From Loretta Sanchez
The 2018 Immigration Symposium --Feb. 23, 2018
The Scholar of St. Mary's University School of Law invites you to participate in this unique event dedicated to giving a voice to the voiceless on Feb. 23.
The focus of The Scholar's annual Immigration Symposium is on the practical aspects of immigration law and the current policy debates that surround the field. Attendees will have the opportunity to hear from a variety of notable immigration attorneys, scholars, and judges on current issues within the field of immigration law in the United States. Major topics to be addressed at the symposium generally include the intersection of criminal law and immigration, asylum, family-based immigration practice, pathways to citizenship, employment-based immigration, employer sanctions, and the constitutional concerns associated with a state's ability to regulate immigration. It is our goal to provide a strong CLE for immigration practitioners and an engaging educational experience for current law students. The conference includes 6.5 CLE credits, including 1 hour of ethics.For more information, please visit www.scholarlawreview.org
2018 IMMIGRATION SYMPOSIUM SPEAKERS
Javier Maldonado—“Discovery in Immigration Courts”
Javier N. Maldonado is a lawyer in private practice in San Antonio, Texas who specializes in representing individuals in complex federal and state litigation in the areas of immigration, employment disputes, criminal, and civil rights law. He attended Columbia University for both undergraduate and law school and then clerked for the Hon. George P. Kazen in Laredo, Texas. Maldonado was awarded a Skadden Fellowship to work at the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) and then joined the legal staff at the end of his fellowship. He was subsequently employed as a trial attorney with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and then became the executive director of the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights of Texas, where he litigated class action and individual civil rights cases on behalf of immigrants. Since March 2006, Maldonado has been in private practice and regularly presents at state and national conferences on civil rights and immigration matters.
Lance Curtright—“Hot Topic Session Covering the Elimination of TPS for 200,000 Salvadorans, the DACA Saga, SB4, and the Current State of Detainers”
Lance Curtright earned a Bachelor of Arts in 1998 from the University of Dallas in Politics. In 2001, he received his J.D. from the University of Nebraska. He has practiced immigration law since 2001. He is Board Certified in Immigration and Nationality Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is a partner at De Mott, McChesney, Curtright & Armendariz, LLP. He was selected for inclusion in the 2016 & 2017 edition of The Best Lawyers in America. Under Curtright’s lead, DMCA’s Litigation Section was awarded the 2013 Best Litigation Department of the Year by Texas Lawyer magazine. Curtright has successfully represented hundreds of clients in deportation proceedings. His successes include published decisions in Hosseini v. Johnson, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 10969 (June 17, 2016); Villegas-Sarabia v. Johnson, 123 F. Supp. 870 (W.D. Tex. 2015); Amrollah v. Napolitano, 710 F.3d 568 (5th Cir. 2013); Matter of Lamus, 25 I&N Dec. 61 (BIA 2009); see also Mortera-Cruz v. Gonzales, 409 F.3d 246 (5th Cir. 2005). He has published articles about immigration law in several law magazines and is a frequent speaker at immigration law conferences. He serves as the Immigration Customs and Enforcement liaison for the San Antonio district.
Reyna Torres Mendívil—“Mexican Consulate Services: Protections, Documents, Civil Registry and Notary, Economic Affairs and Press, and Community Affairs”
Reyna Torres Mendivil is Mexico’s general director for the Protection of Mexicans Abroad. She has held various positions within the Department of Foreign Affairs, including deputy general director for International Policy on Human Rights and deputy chief of staff to the Secretary of Foreign Relations. In 2006, Torres Mendívil was an advisor in the International Affairs Coordination within President Calderon’s Transition Team. She was appointed deputy chief of mission at the Mexican Embassy in the Czech Republic in 2001 and also served in the Embassy of Mexico in the United States from 1996 to 2000 as a political analyst and liaison with Congress, federal authorities, and NGOs regarding human rights, drug trafficking, and elections. Torres Mendívil was a resident Fellow at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University from 2005 to 2006. She graduated from the National Autonomous University of Mexico and holds an MSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics.
Congressman Joaquin Castro—“The Impact of the Current Political Debate on Immigration Politics and Policy”
Joaquin Castro graduated from Stanford University in 1996 and from Harvard Law School in 2000. Upon his return to San Antonio, Castro joined a private law practice and was elected to the Texas Legislature. He served five terms as state representative for District 125. In 2012, he was elected to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives as representative of Texas’s 20th. Since then, Castro has served on both the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Foreign Affairs Committee. He has been called “a rising star in his party” by The Texas Tribune and one of the top 50 politicos to watch by POLITICO.
Dan Kesselbrenner—“Immigration Consequences of Criminal Convictions, Deportation and Detention”
Dan Kesselbrenner is a nationally recognized expert on the immigration consequences of criminal convictions and on contesting deportability in immigration proceedings. He is co-author of Immigration Law and Crimes, cited in the 2010 Supreme Court decision, Padilla v. Kentucky, and has also authored numerous articles on immigration law. Kesselbrenner has trained over 5,000 attorneys for the criminal defense bar, as well as state judges in immigration consequences. He serves as mentor to scores of attorneys. A former member of the Clinton-Gore Department of Justice Immigrant Transition Team, his work advancing and defending immigrants’ rights has earned him numerous awards, including the American Immigration Lawyers Association’s Jack Wasserman Litigation Award. He has directed the National Immigration Project since 1986.
Stacie Jonas—“Human Trafficking: Myths, Facts, Remedies, and Ethical Issues”
Stacie Jonas has helped provide legal services to victims of labor and sex trafficking in Texas and six southern states. She also represents workers who have suffered other forms of labor exploitation. Prior to moving to Texas, Stacie Jonas was an attorney at Southern Migrant Legal Services (SMLS), a project serving migrant farmworkers in the South. She has represented dozens of victims of labor trafficking seeking immigration relief and in civil lawsuits against their traffickers. Jonas earned her undergraduate degree from Notre Dame University in 1997, and received her J.D. from Yale University School of Law in 2007.
Erica Schommer—“Ethical Issues when Representing Families Seeking Humanitarian Relief”
Before joining the St. Mary’s Law faculty, Erica Schommer practiced immigration law on the U.S./Mexico border from 2003 to 2010 with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, Inc. (TRLA), where she was the managing attorney for TRLA’s anti-human trafficking team and the director of the Legal Orientation Program at the Willacy Detention Center in Raymondville, Texas. From 2010 to 2015, Schommer worked in private practice at Rios & Cruz, P.S. in Washington State, where she managed the Tacoma office and focused on removal defense and federal court litigation on behalf of individuals detained at the Northwest Detention Center. Schommer has a background in international human rights and has worked on various human rights issues in Mexico, Guatemala and Costa Rica. Schommer has done pro bono work with both Volunteer Advocates for Immigrant Justice (VAIJ) and the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project. She is licensed by the State Bar of Texas and is admitted to practice before the Fifth and Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeals.
Nina Perales—“Senate Bill 4 (SB4): Texas’s ‘Show Me Your Papers’ Law”
Nina Perales is Vice President of Litigation for MALDEF, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund. In that role, Perales supervises the legal staff and litigation docket in MALDEF’s offices throughout the United States. Perales is best known for her work in voting rights, including redistricting and vote dilution cases. Her litigation has included successful statewide redistricting cases in Texas and Arizona, as well as LULAC v. Perry, the Latino challenge to Texas 2003 congressional redistricting, which she led through trial and argued successfully in the U.S. Supreme Court. She also specializes in immigrants’ rights litigation, including leading cases striking down anti-immigrant laws in Farmers Branch, Texas, and recovering civil damages from violent vigilantes. Perales received a Bachelor’s degree from Brown University and earned her J.D. from Columbia University School of Law.
Kate Lincoln-Goldfinch—“Family Reunification, Not Chain Migration: The Family-Based Immigration System and Recent Updates”
Kate Lincoln-Goldfinch works exclusively on immigration law in her private practice, with a focus on family-based Austin immigration that includes permanent resident cards, waivers, citizenship, deportation defense, and humanitarian cases like U-visas for crime victims, VAWA, and asylum. She also serves as pro bono liaison for the American Immigration Lawyers Association. Kate Lincoln-Goldfinch earned her undergraduate degree from The University of Texas, Austin in 2004, and received her J.D. from The University of Texas School of Law in 2008.