National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild

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(please click on name below to read full staff bios)

Dan Kesselbrenner, Executive Director
617-227-9727 x2, Email Dan Kesselbrenner

Paromita Shah, Associate Director
617-227-9727 x1, Email Paromita Shah

Pamela Goldstein, Director of Development and Communications
617-227-9727 x5, Email Pamela Goldstein

Ellen Kemp, Director of Legal Advocacy
617-227-9727 x4, Email Ellen Kemp

Ana Manigat, Records Coordinator
617-227-9727 x7, Email Ana Manigat

Trina Realmuto, Litigation Director
617-227-9727 x8, Email Trina Realmuto

Rosa Saavedra Vanacore, DACA Fellow
617-227-9727 x6, Email Rosa Saavedra Vanacore

Dew Sung, Finance and Human Resources Manager
617-227-9727 x3, Email Dew Sung

Sejal Zota, Legal Director
617-227-9727 x108, Email Sejal Zota

Interns and Fellows

Khaled Alrabe, Law Fellow
617-227-9727 x111, Email Khaled Alrabe

Megan Browder, Legal Intern
617-227-9727 x108, Email Megan Browder

Nadia Eldemerdash, Communications Intern
Email Nadia Eldemerdash



Dan Kesselbrenner
Dan Kesselbrenner, Executive Director

Program Areas: Immigration Consequences of Criminal Convictions, Deportation and Detention, Post-9/11 issues, DACA
617-227-9727 x2
Email Dan Kesselbrenner

Dan Kesselbrenner is a nationally recognized expert on the immigration consequences of criminal convictions and on contesting deportability in immigration proceedings. Dan is co-author of Immigration Law and Crimes, which was cited in the 2010 Supreme Court decision, Padilla v. Kentucky, and has also authored numerous articles on immigration law. Dan has trained over 5,000 attorneys for the criminal defense bar as well as state judges in immigration consequences. He serves as mentor to scores of attorneys. A former member of the Clinton-Gore Department of Justice Immigrant Transition Team, Dan’s work advancing and defending immigrants’ rights has earned him numerous awards, including the American Immigration Lawyers Association’s Jack Wasserman Litigation Award. Dan has directed the National immigration Project since 1986. 

Paromita Shah
Paromita Shah, Associate Director

Program Areas: Detention and Deportation, Enforcement, Gangs & Immigration, DACA
617-227-9727 x1
Email Paromita Shah

Paromita Shah has served as Associate Director since 2005, specializing in immigration detention and enforcement. She is a contributing author and co-presenter of the “Deportation 101” curriculum, participates in regular advocacy efforts with ICE officials, and has created an abundance of resources for communities affected by heightened immigration enforcement efforts. Previously, Paromita served as director of Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights (CAIR) Coalition in Washington, DC, where she conducted presentations in regional county jails, trained attorneys, assessed detainee claims for relief, and conducted liaison meetings with DHS and DOJ. She also worked as a staff attorney at Greater Boston Legal Services.

Pamela Goldstein, Director of
Development and Communications

617-227-9727 x5
Email Pamela Goldstein

Pamela Goldstein has been working in non-profit development, communications, and capacity-building for over 25 years. Prior to joining the National Immigration Project in 2010, she held senior development positions at the international anti-poverty agency Oxfam America, at the Cambridge Women’s Center, and at CASA, the Central America Solidarity Association. Pamela brings a passion for social justice struggles to her work, and holds a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. She is inspired by the National Immigration Project's mission, work, and its many generous supporters. Contact her anytime to say hello and provide feedback on NIPNLG's work!

Ellen Kemp, Director of Legal Advocacy

Program Areas: VAWA/gender violence issues,
U nonimmigrant visas, seminars and legal education,
617-227-9727 x4
Email Ellen Kemp

Ellen Kemp is a part-time legal worker advocate at the National Immigration Project, which she joined in 2002. Ellen provides technical assistance and educational materials to attorney members, legal workers, advocates, law students, detainees, and the public regarding immigration options for noncitizen survivors of crimes, including survivors of intimate partner violence and workplace crimes. In addition, Ellen manages NIPNLG’s continuing legal education programs.

Ana Manigat, Records Coordinator

617-227-9727 x7
Email Ana Manigat

Ana Manigat oversees and maintains the National Immigration Project's database records, including membership data, payment status, seminar registration, address changes, and on-line payment information. Ana also manages the National Immigration Project’s many listservs, including National Immigration Project (membership) and Crim-imm (Criminal and Immigration Law). Ana joined the staff of the National Immigration Project in 2002.

Trina Realmuto, Litigation Director
Program Areas: Litigation Strategy, Reinstatement of Removal, Government Accountability
617-227-9727 x8
Email Trina Realmuto

Trina Realmuto's work primarily focuses on litigation before the federal courts on issues related to removal defense and government accountability.
Previously, Trina wrote amicus briefs and practice advisories for the American Immigration Council.  She also has worked abroad representing noncitizens applying for visas at U.S. embassies and consulates.
Trina began her career as an associate attorney at Van Der Hout, Brigagliano & Nightingale where she concentrated on removal defense and complex federal court litigation. Trina has argued and litigated several precedent decisions on behalf of noncitizens and amicus curiae, written numerous practice advisories, and is a frequent presenter on immigration issues.


Dew Sung
, Finance and
Human Resources Manager

617-227-9727 x3
Email Dew Sung

Dew Sung has worked in Accounting and Human Resources for nearly ten years. During this period she has assisted in writing grant applications and supporting fundraising efforts for different non-profit education and youth advocacy organizations. An Asian American Studies major committed to immigrant and women’s rights, Dew has participated in the Angel Island Oral History Project and the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum. 

Rosa G. Saavedra Vanacore
, DACA Fellow
Program Areas: Deferred Action Programs (DACA, Expanded DACA, and DAPA)
617-227-9727 x6
Email Rosa Saavedra Vanacore

Rosa G. Saavedra Vanacore's position supports the Own the Dream campaign, which seeks to help eligible immigrant youth apply for DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). She provides referrals, technical assistance, and educational materials to organizations and advocates seeking to assist DREAMers impacted by DACA's public safety and criminal bars. Prior to joining NIPNLG, she worked as the Legal Assistant at Carliner & Remes, PC, and served as the Education Not Deportation (END) Case Manager for United We Dream. Rosa holds a B.A. from Middlebury College, where she designed her own major in Comparative Literature.

Sejal Zota
Sejal Zota, Legal Director

Program Areas: Immigration Consequences of Criminal Convictions, Deportation and Detention
617-227-9727 x108
Email Sejal Zota

Sejal Zota's work focuses on the implementation of the Supreme Court's decision in Padilla v. Kentucky through education, litigation support, and technical assistance. Previously, Sejal taught, consulted, and wrote about the impacts of immigration on state and local government at the University of North Carolina's School of Government. She also worked with indigent defenders and other criminal court personnel on the intersection of criminal and immigration law. She is the lead author of Consequences of a Criminal Conviction in North Carolina. Sejal has worked as a teaching fellow in the Immigrant Rights Clinic of the New York University School of Law, as a public defender with the Bronx Defenders, and as a Kirkland and Ellis fellow at the Immigrant Defense Project.


Interns and Fellows

Khaled Alrabe
Khaled Alrabe, Law Fellow
Program Areas: Federal litigation, U nonimmigrant visas
617-227-9727 x111
Email Khaled Alrabe

Khaled Alrabe is a law fellow whose work focuses on litigation efforts before federal courts; and advocacy on U-visas for victims of workplace crimes, particularly fraud in foreign labor contracting. In that capacity, he has researched and drafted amicus briefs as well as advocacy memoranda, and has primary responsibility for responding to letters from immigration detainees. Khaled is a graduate of Georgetown Law School.

Megan Browder
Megan Browder, Legal Intern

617-227-9727 x108
Email Megan Browder


Megan Browder's legal internship focuses on the immigration consequences of criminal convictions. She is currently working on a practice advisory to compile generic definitions for aggravated felonies. Megan is a third-year student at Yale Law School.

Nadia Eldemerdash
Nadia Eldemerdash,
Communications Intern

Email Nadia Eldemerdash

Nadia Eldemerdash is a journalist and writer. She recently earned her MA in political science from the University of Toronto, where her research focused on immigration policies and their impact on minority communities in the United States and Middle East. At NIPNLG she focuses on social media engagement. She also presently works as a communications organizer for a local nonprofit that advocates for immigrant communities. Nadia lives in Las Vegas, NV.

History of the National Immigration Project
© Photo by Fred Askew

Union Sq. to Times Sq. unity march.

New York City Oct. 21, 2006