We are thrilled to announce Jorge Martinez and Christopher Gallo as our July 2016 Clients of the Month. Jorge is a permanent resident who just returned from Honduras where he obtained his immigrant visa after being approved for an I-601A provisional waiver for hardship to his U.S. citizen husband, Chris. Jorge returned to Honduras after being gone for more than 20 years and was able to hug his mother again and reunite with his extended family.
Our client of the month for June 2016 is Julia Marquez. Ms. Marquez fled her native Venezuela with her son after suffering systematic and targeted attacks by the Venezuelan government and the government-backed paramilitary groups. Ms. Marquez was targeted in Venezuela because, as a journalist and political activist, she dared to expose the corrupt and discriminatory practices of the Chavez regime and was dedicated to bringing democracy back to Venezuela.
BN was born in Manhattan, New York while her parents were serving as Diplomats in the U.S. as part of the Angolan Mission to the United Nations. As a result of her parents’ diplomatic status, BN was one of the few people born in the U.S. who do not receive birthright citizenship. Although BN was born and raised in the United States, she was also not eligible for DACA because her parent’s diplomatic status expired after DACA was offered.
We are thrilled to introduce you to Dr. Aparna Pande, our April 2016 Client of the Month and a new permanent resident. Several months ago, we obtained an EB-1 approval for Dr. Pande as an outstanding researcher in the field of international politics of South Asia. Dr. Pande is the Director of the Initiative on the Future of India and South Asia at the Hudson Institute.
Our client of the month for March 2016 is Mekonnen Firew. Mekonnen and his wife Hanna are two of the strongest, most resilient people we have ever worked with at Benach Collopy. They fled Ethiopia in fear for their lives after suffering horrific violence at the hands of the Ethiopian government, who wrongfully believed them to be working with the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) because of their Oromo ethnicity.
Our client of the month for February is Rubén García, a native of Spain and brilliant chef, who recently became a U.S. citizen with the help of his attorney Dree Collopy and paralegal Liana Montecinos. After training under Martin Berasategui and other notable mentors in Spain, Rubén is now the right-hand man of Washington, DC’s own José Andrés and a key mastermind behind the Think Food Group’s culinary concepts as its Director of Research and Development.
Our Client of the Month for January 2016 is Monique Kagayigayi. A survivor of the Rwandan genocide whose asylum claim was granted in 2004, Monique just received her green card after more than 10 years of waiting. This is the story of a remarkable woman and the legal efforts that were required to secure her status in the United States. On April 6, 1994, Rwanda’s then-president’s plane was shot down, sparking more than three months of terror and killing throughout Rwanda that today seems unthinkable.
Sometimes our work is in fixing the errors of previous attorneys. That is what happened to Rudi and Alba Reyes, who walked into our offices with removal orders entered by an immigration judge in Baltimore, MD. The immigration judge ordered them removed after their lawyer failed to file an application for a waiver of inadmissibility with the court as requested by the court. The removal order potentially meant that this couple who have lived in the U.S.
For November 2015, we want to honor two good friends of Benach Collopy (FOBR), Allison Rashkin (left) and Jessica Lang (right), who became U.S.citizens this year. Allison came to the U.S. from Montreal, Canada and Jessica from Costa Rica. Both are spinning instructors at Zengo Cycle in Bethesda. Neither of them had hard cases. But they are the kind of cases that thrill us at Benach Collopy.
Our client of the month for October 2015 is Juan Carlos Acajabon Mendez. After receiving an approval of the I-601A provisional waiver, Carlos recently returned from Guatemala, where he received his immigrant visa and entered the U.S. as a permanent resident after more than two decades of living without status in the U.S. Carlos is the most recent BR client to receive an immigrant visa under the I-601A Provisional Waiver program, which permits individuals with approved immigrant relative petitions to seek a waiver of their “inadmissibility” (due to unlawful presence in the U.S.)