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2023 AILA NE Conference

20th Annual AILA New England Immigration Law Conference
October 6, 2023
MCLE-10 Winter Place, Boston MA 02108

AILA New England is proud to celebrate its 20th annual immigration law conference and particularly this year’s, which will be the first in-person conference since the COVID-19 pandemic. As a chapter of colleagues and friends, we will be joined by representatives of government agencies, our national office, and several experts from other chapters. These fabulous speakers will share substantive law updates, agency developments, litigation news, and tips on incorporating wellness and new technology into our practices.

Friday 6 October

8:00 AM – 9:00 AM

Ethical Issues for Lawyers in Leveraging Technology

  • Preserving Confidentiality in Firm and Client Data
  • Document Automation Enhancements with AI
  • Smart Phone Privacy Pitfalls
  • AI Chat GPT and other Machine Learning Models: The New Frontier

Moderator: Madeline Cronin, Charlestown, MA

  • Afton Pavletic, Asst. Bar Counsel MA BBO, Boston, MA
  • Laura Keeler, Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers, Boston, MA

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM

Hot Topics: Immigration News, Updates and Alerts
Moderator: Robin Nice, AILANE Chapter Chair

  • Sharvari Dalal-Dheini, AILA Director of Government Relations
  • Farshad Owji, AILA President
  • Aaron Reichlin-Melnick, American Immigration Council Policy Director

10:00 AM – 10:10 AM


10:10 AM – 10:15 AM

Welcome from the Chair

10:15 AM – 11:15 AM

Interagency Panel: Agencies Working in Tandem
Moderator: Jeanette Kain

  • Denis C. Riordan, USCIS District Director, District 1
  • David Wesling, (acting) Deputy Field Office Director, ICE/ERO Boston Field Office
  • Todd Thurlow, Assistant Field Office Director, ICE/ERO Boston Field Office
  • Sam Kiley, Chief CBP Officer, Customs and Border Protection
  • Meghann Boyle, Director, USCIS Boston Asylum Office

11:15 AM – 11:30 AM


11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Getting the Client In: From Post to Port and Beyond

  • Sprinting from USCIS to NVC to Post
  • Parole including Biden Administration Initiatives
  • Preparing clients to interview for Visas, Entries and Admissions
  • Best Practices at Ports of Entry

Moderator: Mahsa Khanbabai, Easton MA

  • Atessa Chehrazi, San Francisco, CA
  • Adeline Boulanger, Burlington, VT

12:30 PM – 1:40 PM

Lunch (on your own) or Visit Exhibitors (Main Reception) or join Wellness Panel (auditorium) – receive a complimentary boxed lunch if you attend the Wellness session!

12:40 PM – 1:40 PM

The Best Wellness Tips in 60 Minutes

  • Using Technology to Enhance Wellness
  • Office Wellness: Communicate and Delegate
  • Scheduling Work, Downtime and Self-Care
  • Getting Help and Other Resources

Moderator: Christina Kelley, Boston, MA

  • Emily Amara Gordon, Brookline, MA
  • Charity Anastasio, Practice Management Advisor, AILA Practice and Professionalism Center

1:40 PM – 5:00 PM

Concurrent Workshop Tracks

5:30 PM – 8:00 PM

AIC Event at SIP Wine Bar & Kitchen (581 Washington St., Boston)

*Invited, not confirmed

TRACK ONE: Business & Employment Immigration (Lower-Level Meeting Room)

1:40 PM – 2:40 PM

DOL Practice: Hearing from the Experts

  • The New 9089: Lessons Learned So Far
  • All Things Virtual
  • Recruitment in the Shadow of the Facebook Settlement
  • Avoiding Common Mistakes with the PERM Process

Moderator: Sara Mailander, AILANE Chapter Secretary

  • Adrienne Vaughan, AILANE Immediate Past Chapter Chair, Boston, MA
  • Vincent Lau, AILA DOL Liaison Committee Chair, Boston, MA

2:40 PM – 3:40 PM

Effective Representation of Clients at USCIS

  • Current Practice at Local USCIS Field Offices
  • Managing Processing Delays, Backlogs and Other Snags
  • Overcoming RFEs, NOIDs and Denials
  • Preparing for FY2025 H-1B Cap Season

Moderator: Miki Matrician, AILANE Chair-Elect, Boston, MA

  • Robin O’Donoghue, AILA USCIS HQ Liaison Committee Chair, Cambridge, MA
  • Beatriz T Ballerini, AILA Field Operations Committee Chair, Houston, TX

3:40 PM – 4:00 PM

Networking/Snack Break

4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Answers to “Quick Questions” and Other Conundrums

  • Options for Out of Status Foreign Nationals
  • How to Advise Employers Regarding the NIV Remote Workforce and Employees Relocating Without Notice
  • Maintaining Status and Work Authorization for Nonimmigrant Dependents
  • Best Practices for Filing I-140s Based on an Approved PERM and Maintaining AC21 Eligibility

Moderator: Matthew Maiona, Boston, MA

  • Bennett Savitz, Boston, MA
  • Michael Nowlan, Detroit, MI

TRACK TWO: Family and Removal (Main Auditorium)

1:40 PM – 2:40 PM

When Court Gets (Extra) Tough…The Tough Get Litigating

  • Contesting NTAs and requesting termination with Matter of Fernandes
  • Advocating before IJs biased for DHS and/or against your client
  • Objecting to DHS tactics and complaints against DHS or IJs
  • Strategic termination of proceedings and Prosecutorial Discretion requests
  • How administrative closure impacts the attorney-client relationship

Moderator: Annelise Maia Jatoba de Araujo, Boston, MA

  • Julio Cortes del Olmo, AILANE EOIR Liaison, Brookline, MA
  • Shantanu Chatterjee, Boston, MA
  • Tania Martinez Palumbo, Lawrence, MA

2:40 PM – 3:40 PM

Putting Your Best Foot Forward in Family-Based Immigration and Getting Back Up When Things Go Wrong

  • Protecting I-130 and I-360 Petitions from re-adjudication
  • Case preparation strategies to avoid RFEs and non-mandatory interviews
  • Rough interviews: requesting a supervisor, pausing an interview and filing a complaint
  • When to file an appeal versus a new petition
  • Effective use of I-601A waivers in removal proceedings

Moderator: Eliana Nader, Boston, MA

  • Audrey Robert-Ramirez, Boston, MA
  • Stephanie Marzouk, Cambridge, MA

3:40 PM – 4:00 PM

Networking/Snack Break

4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

All Things Humanitarian: Nuggets and Pitfalls in Asylum, VAWA and U Visa Relief

  • Identifying who benefits from DOL’s new whistleblower program
  • Determining how much harm is enough for U-visa and VAWA eligibility
  • Risks and benefits of applying for multiple forms of relief
  • How tricky are T-visas really?

Moderator: Kira Gagarin, Framingham, MA

  • Melanie Shapiro, Norwood, MA
  • Leah Glowacki, Portland, ME
  • Katie Minervino, Portland, ME
October 6, 2023
8:00 AM – 8:00 PM ET
In-person & Virtual Event – Zoom
MCLE-10 Winter Place, Boston MA 02108

Conference Registration

*ATTENTION* Registration for in-person attendance is close to capacity. There is no guarantee that we can accommodate all “Attend in Person” registrations if the in-person seating sells out. If sold out, those registrations will default to “Attend Virtually” with a refund option available in the alternative. All registrants will receive an email confirmation no later than September 21 confirming in person/virtual attendance.

AILA Members


Non-AILA Members




AILA New England no longer requires proof of vaccination status to attend the chapter’s in-person conferences, meetings, or events. Mask-wearing is optional, at the discretion of each attendee. Please act responsibly and with consideration for the health and safety of others. By registering for and attending the conference, you voluntarily agree to assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19; to accept primary responsibility for taking steps to protect yourself from contracting COVID-19; to follow all federal/state/local public health and government guidelines on COVID-19 health and safety in effect at the time of the conference, as directed by AILA New England; and to fully comply with any health, safety, and other policies instituted by AILA and the venue while attending the conference, including any modifications and/or enhancements of health and safety protocols.