AILA Public Statements, Press Releases

AILA Presents Nora Elizabeth Phillips with the 2017 Michael Maggio Memorial Pro Bono Award

6/19/17 AILA Doc. No. 17061901. DACA, Humanitarian Parole, Removal & Relief, T & U Status
George Tzamaras
Belle Woods

WASHINGTON, DC - The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) will recognize Nora Elizabeth Phillips, of Los Angeles, CA, with the 2017 Michael Maggio Memorial Pro Bono Award for outstanding efforts in providing pro bono representation in the immigration field. The award will be presented this week during AILA's Annual Conference in New Orleans, LA.

Ms. Phillips is recognized as a national expert on U nonimmigrant status and DACA, presents extensively to the legal community on these remedies, and serves as an informal adviser on immigration matters to the Los Angeles Office of the Federal Public Defender and the Los Angeles County Public Defender's Office.

Her practice consists exclusively of immigration matters; she was a founding partner in the East Los Angeles-based immigration firm Phillips & Urias, LLP, and is co-founder and Legal Director of Al Otro Lado, a binational nonprofit organization providing free direct legal and other services to indigent deportees, refugees, and migrants in Los Angeles and Tijuana.

Ms. Phillips is a 2007 graduate of the DePaul University College of Law in Chicago, Illinois. Following law school, Ms. Phillips was an Equal Justice Works Fellow at the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago from 2007 to 2009, where she specialized in U nonimmigrant status (the U visa) for crime victims. She also represented clients in removal proceedings, including individuals in ICE custody. Ms. Phillips then moved to Los Angeles, where she serves as an expert on U nonimmigrant status for the Los Angeles Office of the Federal Public Defender and had worked as a staff attorney for the Central American Resource Center (CARECEN) from 2009 to 2013. At CARECEN, she focused on U nonimmigrant status, VAWA self-petitions, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), and represented clients in removal proceedings. She also handled removal of conditions for conditional permanent residents (joint and waiver), family-based petitions (including for same-sex couples), complex humanitarian parole, advance parole, naturalization and citizenship, TPS, and asylum matters.


The American Immigration Lawyers Association is the national association of immigration lawyers established to promote justice, advocate for fair and reasonable immigration law and policy, advance the quality of immigration and nationality law and practice, and enhance the professional development of its members.