Deborah Anker

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Deborah Anker is a Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the Harvard Law School Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program (HIRC).  She has taught law students at Harvard for thirty years.  Author of a leading treatise, Law of Asylum in the United States, Anker has co-drafted ground-breaking gender asylum guidelines and amicus curiae briefs.  Professor Anker is one of the most widely known asylum scholars and practitioners in the United States; she is cited frequently by international and domestic courts and tribunals, including the United States Supreme Court.  In 2011, she was chosen to be a fellow of the prestigious American Bar Foundation. Professor Anker is a pioneer in the development of clinical legal education in the immigration field, training students in direct representation of refugees and creating a foundation for clinics at law schools around the country.

John Willshire Carrera

John Willshire CarreraJohn Willshire Carrera, co-managing director of HIRC at Greater Boston Legal Services, as well as lecturer on law and senior clinical instructor at HLS. He is a nationally known researcher and practitioner with numerous high-profile immigration and asylum litigation victories to his credit. In 1987, he directed the Ford Foundation national research and organizing project on implementation of Plyler v. Doe, the Supreme Court decision that established the right of all immigrant students to a public education in the United States. He has received the Dow-Gardner-Landrum Award for outstanding commitment to legal services to the poor and the annual legal services attorney award from the Massachusetts Bar Association, among others.

Nancy Kelly

Nancy KellyNancy Kelly is co-managing director of HIRC at Greater Boston Legal Services and senior clinical instructor and lecturer on law at HLS. She previously worked as a Harvard Law School Human Rights Program fellow and also as an adjunct professor of immigration and asylum law at Northeastern University School of Law.  At the Human Rights Program, Ms. Kelly initiated the nationally and internationally prominent Women Refugees Project, a centerpiece of the Clinic’s work. Among other honors, Ms. Kelly received the 2000 John G. Brooks Award of the Boston Bar Association for her work with refugee women and children, and for her teaching at the Clinic.

Sabi Ardalan

Sabi ArdalanSabi Ardalan is HIRC’s assistant director, as well as assistant clinical professor of law at HLS. Sabi previously clerked for the Honorable Michael A. Chagares of Third Circuit Court of Appeals and the Honorable Raymond J. Dearie, Chief District Judge for the Eastern District of New York. She also worked as the Equal Justice America Fellow at The Opportunity Agenda and as a litigation associate at Dewey Ballantine LLP. She holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School and a B.A. in History and International Studies from Yale College.

Phil Torrey

Philip Torrey

Phil Torrey is the Managing Attorney of the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program, a Lecturer on Law, and the Supervising Attorney for the Harvard Immigration Project. At HLS, he supervises the Crimmigration Clinic and he teaches a course concerning the intersection of criminal law and immigration law. The Crimmigration Clinic provides advice to criminal defense attorneys around the country concerning the immigration consequences of criminal charges, as well as state and federal appellate litigation support, and policy advocacy. His research focuses on the crime-based grounds of removal and immigration detention, including the private prison industry, and the immigration system’s mandatory detention regime.  Prior to joining HLS, Torrey worked as an attorney in the Immigration Unit of Greater Boston Legal Services and as a litigation associate at the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. He received his B.A. from Colgate University and his J.D. with honors from the University of Connecticut School of Law.

 Jason Corral

Jason Corral is a staff attorney at the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program (HIRC). Jason represents DACAmented and undocumented individuals of the Harvard Community. He received his J.D. from Northeastern Law School in 2004 and has been admitted to the Massachusetts Bar. Before working at HIRC Jason served as a member of the immigration team at Greater Boston Legal Services; served as the KIND (Kids In Need of Defense) fellow in Boston, and acted as the supervising attorney at Catholic Charities of Boston. Jason has received acknowledgements from the Fundacion Ritmo Guanaco for his work with immigrant children and The National Immigration Project for his work in the immigrant community of New England following the Michael Bianco Factory raids. In addition to helping immigrants understand the legal pathways to citizenship, Jason is experienced in helping immigrants who face hardships such as fear of persecution, minors that arrive without parents, LGBT issues and victims of violence. (for an appointment, email Nilce Maldonado)

Cindy Zapata

zapataCindy Zapata is a Clinical Instructor at the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program. She was previously a litigation associate at Hughes Hubbard and Reed LLP, where she engaged in a wide variety of immigration-related cases. During law school, she interned with the Boston Immigration Court and was a clinical student at the East Bay Community Law Center in Berkeley, CA. She holds a J.D. from UC Berkeley School of Law, and a B.A. in Political Science from Queens College – CUNY.

Andrea Meza


Andrea Meza is the Albert M. Sacks Clinical & Advocacy Fellow at HIRC. Andrea joins the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic after serving as an Equal Justice Works Fellow at the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Service (RAICES) in San Antonio, Texas. As a fellow she managed and developed the Karnes Pro Bono Project, whose mission is to provide pro bono legal services to asylum-seeking mothers and children at the Karnes family detention center in Karnes City, Texas. Andrea received her JD from The University of Texas School of Law in 2015, and was recognized with a 2015 Law Student Pro Bono Award by the Texas Access to Justice Commission.

Jordana Arias

jordi-blanco-y-negroJordana Arias is the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program’s Program Administrator.  She recently relocated from Washington, D.C. where she worked at the University of the District of Columbia’s David A. Clark School of Law for nearly ten years. While there, she also served as a community organizer and volunteered for several pro-immigrant non-profit organizations and faith-based groups where she worked closely with at-risk communities. She is passionate about helping people – especially those in underprivileged and disenfranchised populations.

Liala Buoniconti

Liala Buoniconti is the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic’s Social Worker. Liala also works as a social worker at the MGH Healthcare Center in Chelsea, Mass., and has over 10 years of experience working with immigrants and refugees.

Nilce Maldonado          

Nilce Maldonado is the Paralegal at Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program. She was previously an immigration paralegal at Becker & Associates, P.A. in Boca Raton, FL, where she was responsible for family-based petitions, three- and ten-year bar waivers, deportation removal, and citizenship cases. Fluent in Spanish, her native tongue, Nilce has appeared before the US. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and legal clinics as an interpreter and translator. She has over eight years of experience working and volunteering with diverse groups of people, including vulnerable women and children, through the efforts of domestic and global organizations. Nilce has lived in India, where she worked with human rights agencies that focus on anti-human trafficking, education, and protection in the developing world.  She is interested in philanthropic work, women empowerment, and child welfare.

Mary Hewey

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Mary Hewey is a part-time administrative assistant at the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program and the Harvard Representation Initiative. She previously worked as an organizer and communications director for Massachusetts Jobs with Justice, a statewide workers’ rights coalition. She has lived in Guatemala, where she became proficient in Spanish, and has spent time in Mexico and Nicaragua. She is an advocate for many social justice causes, including LGBTQ equality and workers’ rights.