AILA Public Statements

AILA Presents Hannah Cartwright with the 2023 Advocacy Award

6/2/23 AILA Doc. No. 23060108.

Friday, June 2, 2023

George Tzamaras
Belle Woods

WASHINGTON, DC - The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) recognizes Hannah Cartwright of Indianapolis, IN, with the 2023 Advocacy Award for outstanding efforts in support of AILA’s advocacy agenda.

Hannah Cartwright was nominated for the award due to her close work with colleagues at AILA National and the Center for Gender Refugee Studies on a collaborative response to the November 2022 data breach that affected 6,000 detained immigrants who were in CFI/RFI proceedings. She is deeply committed to collaborative advocacy efforts through AILA and other attorney networks that contribute to zealous advocacy on behalf of immigrant clients and also build community and sustainability among the immigration bar. Her work to ensure that vicarious trauma concerns are addressed as immigration attorneys are affected through work with vulnerable clients was also cited in her nomination.

Ms. Cartwright is a detained removal defense attorney who currently serves as the Executive Director of Mariposa Legal, a holistic nonprofit legal service provider engaged in movement lawyering in Indianapolis, IN. She and her colleagues represent residents of Indiana who are detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and she also represents immigrants found legally incompetent before Immigration Courts around the country through the National Qualified Representative Program.

Previously, Ms. Cartwright served as a supervising attorney at the National Immigrant Justice Center in Chicago, IL, and a staff attorney at the Pennsylvania Immigration Resource Center in York, PA. She was an Attorney Advisor at the Philadelphia Immigration Court through the Department of Justice Honors Program between 2013 and 2015. Holding both a Juris Doctor and a Master of Social Work from Catholic University of America, she is licensed in both Indiana and Maryland, currently serves as the Treasurer of the Midwest Immigration Bond Fund (MIBF), and organizes with the Communities Not Cages Indiana Coalition and the Detention Watch Network.

Ms. Cartwright is a member of the AILA Indiana and AILA Chicago chapters; she currently serves as the AILA Indiana Well-being Liaison and previously was the AILA Indiana ICE liaison from 2020-2022. She was honored to be recognized by her Midwest colleagues as the recipient of both the AILA Indiana and AILA Chicago Pro Bono Awards in 2020 for her work in co-founding Mariposa and MIBF.

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.