PLS IMMIGRATION UNIT
Nicholas Phillips, Acting Managing Attorney. Before joining PLS, Nick worked as an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow at Pace Community Law Practice in White Plains, NY, where he provided free legal representation to prisoners in deportation proceedings and to unaccompanied children in Immigration Court and Family Court proceedings. A 2014 graduate of the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Nick worked in law school at the Immigration Justice Clinic, where he represented immigrants in deportation proceedings because of criminal convictions, and at the Civil Rights Clinic, where he represented incarcerated clients in federal civil rights lawsuits. After graduation, Nick served as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Frederic Block of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.
Sayra Gordillo, Staff Attorney. A 2016 graduate of the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law, Sayra has a long history of advocating for social justice. Sayra was an organizer for the National Guestworker Alliance and Missouri Jobs with Justice prior to attending law school. As a law student, Sayra conducted wrongful conviction investigations for the Midwest Innocence Project and received the Peggy Browning and Center for Constitutional Rights Ella Baker Fellowships for her work at the New Orleans Workers’ Center for Racial Justice. As a visiting student at Northeastern Law in Boston, she completed the Prisoners’ Rights Clinic and interned at the Committee for Public Counsel Services, Immigration Impact Unit, focusing in criminal and immigration issues. Before joining PLS, Sayra was a Volunteer Attorney at the Federal Public Defender’s office in Kansas City.
Rohmah Javed, Staff Attorney. Rohmah was born in Southampton, England and then moved to Toronto, Canada where she grew up. She completed an undergraduate degree in the life sciences at McMaster University before moving to Cleveland, Ohio for law school. Rohmah attended law school in Cleveland, Ohio at Case Western Reserve University School of Law where she worked at the Civil Rights, Human Rights and Immigration Law Clinic. She became interested in immigration law because of her own family’s unique immigration story, and after working on asylum cases and other affirmative immigration applications at her law school’s Clinic. Rohmah is licensed in the state of New York.
Joseph Moravec, Staff Attorney Joseph was born in the Chicago suburbs and grew up in central Illinois. He moved to Virginia to attend Washington & Lee University where he studied political science and economics. As an undergraduate, Joseph conducted several research projects in East Africa investigating poverty, community development, and environmental conservation. In 2014 Joseph moved to New York to attend Pace Law School in White Plains. During his first summer in law school, he interned at St. Andrew’s Refugee Legal Services in Cairo, Egypt, where he assisted with asylum applications and advocated for increased security protections and access to healthcare for asylum-seekers living in Egypt. During his second and third years, Joseph worked in the Pace Immigration Justice Clinic, where he represented several detained and non-detained immigration cases and oversaw a broad portfolio of legislative affairs activities. He graduated in May with a joint J.D.-LL.M. in Environmental Law and took the bar exam in July.
Jillian Nowak, Staff Attorney was born and raised in Buffalo, NY. Jillian received her B.A. in Sociology from Hofstra University and her J.D. from the University at Buffalo with a concentration in International Law. In 2014, as the recipient of the Buffalo Human Rights Center Fellowship, Jillian conducted research on reparations for victims of the Khmer Rouge genocide through the Documentation Center of Cambodia (DC-Cam) at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC). Jillian was selected for the inaugural class of New York Pro Bono Scholars and was admitted to the New York State Bar in June 2015. Before joining PLS, Jillian worked at Journey’s End Refugee Services, one of Buffalo’s refugee resettlement agencies, providing free and low cost legal representation to immigrants, including refugees and asylum seekers.
Aisatou Diallo, Law Graduate was born in the Bronx, New York. She holds a BS in Law and Society from Sage College of Albany, with minors in Psychology and Business, a Master’s degree in Environmental Law and Policy, and a Juris Doctorate from Vermont Law School. Aisatou’s motivation to attend law school came from her experience working directly with immigrants. Working with incoming families, she provided assistance with government benefit forms on areas such as food stamps, driver licenses, and Medicare. Her volunteer work has also included working remotely to help build an online Immigration Center for a refugee support organization based in Canada, and visiting detention centers in Texas to provide assistance to asylum seekers. In her second year of law school, Aisatou was a Human Rights Fellow at Vermont Law School, where she worked with the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions researching the risks of life faced by women and girl refugees and asylum seekers. Aisatou also spent her last year of law school interning with the Bloomington Immigration Court and the Executive Office of Immigration
Mary Slattery, joins PLSNY as an Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow after graduating from Northeastern University School of Law, where she was a Public Interest Law Scholar. She has completed internships with PLSNY's own Immigration Unit, the San Francisco court of the Executive Office for Immigration Review, Legal Centre Lesbos in Greece, Northwest Workers’ Justice Project in Oregon, and the Mekong Migration Network in Thailand. Prior to law school, she spent 4 years as an Immigration Paralegal, first with the Immigrant Worker Project in Canton, OH and later at the Legal Aid Society of NYC where she was an Accredited Representative before the Board of Immigration Appeals. Mary received her B.A. from Oberlin College in Oberlin, OH in Political Science and Latin American Studies.
Halinka Zolcik, Immigration Justice Corps Fellow. Halinka joined the Albany office of PLS as an immigration law graduate/immigrant justice corps fellow in September 2017. Halinka received her JD from the University of Wyoming College of Law in May 2017. Before attending law school, she worked for a criminal law district court judge for two years where she realized the injustice that incarcerated immigrants face. She has participated in a wide-variety of internships in the area of criminal law, including internships with the: Colorado Public Defenders Office, Colorado Adult Probation, United States Attorney’s Office in Colorado, Wyoming Guardian Ad Litem’s Office and the Wyoming Public Defender’s Office. She was an intern at the International Human Rights Clinic in Laramie, Wyoming in her second year of law school and the student director of the clinic in her final year of law school. In January 2017, Ms. Zolcik was offered a position as an Immigrant Justice Corps fellow and was subsequently placed with Prisoners Legal Services.