Legal Advisory Committee Member Highlight: Samantha Lee

CAIR Coalition’s Legal Advisory Committee (LAC) is comprised of long standing supporters of our mission and our clients.  The role of the LAC is to provide advice and input on our programs, our future, and how we interact with the legal community.  LAC members are champions of CAIR Coalition and part of the CAIR Coalition family. Check out our member highlight interview below with LAC member Samantha Lee.

What is your day job?

Since graduating from law school, I have worked as an attorney in Wiley Rein LLP’s Government Contracts practice.  We are a full-service provider of legal representation to companies that sell goods and services to the Government, helping them navigate the legal and regulatory requirements unique to the Government market.

How did you first get involved with CAIR Coalition’s work?

A few years ago, Wiley Rein decided to select CAIR Coalition as one of its strategic partners in pro bono representation based on CAIR Coalition’s mission to serve the immigrant community and its terrific reputation for representation and advocacy.  A colleague in the Government Contracts practice asked if I would join her to represent a young man seeking asylum from persecution because of his sexual orientation.  I have been a devoted supporter of CAIR Coalition since then.

When you worked on your case, what was that experience like?

So far, I have worked on two asylum cases with CAIR Coalition.  In both cases, the most important part of my work was gaining the trust of our clients, who were traumatized by violence and intimidated by the court system.  My CAIR Coalition mentors gave me invaluable advice on how to do that, as well as procedural and substantive guidance—the expertise and level of support provided by those mentors was unique in my pro bono experience.  The cases were exhilarating, exhausting, and humbling, and have deepened my respect for members of the immigrant community and the dedicated team at CAIR Coalition.

What do you see as your role in helping immigrants as a member of the CAIR Coalition’s Legal Advisory Committee?

As a member of CAIR Coalition’s Legal Advisory Committee, I help immigrants by helping CAIR Coalition maintain its network of informed, invested pro bono attorneys.

What do you hope the future holds for CAIR Coalition and its clients?

I hope for a future in which CAIR Coalition is able to expand its work educating the community and crafting unique and impactful advocacy projects, and a future that respects the human and civil rights of CAIR Coalition’s clients and keeps families together.