EXECUTIVE OFFICE FOR IMMIGRATION REVIEW

Board of Immigration Appeals

Biographies

Last updated: February 15, 2000
Presentation 1999 VIKRAM BADRINATH, P.C. All rights reserved.


U.S. Department of Justice
Executive Office for Immigration Review
Board of Immigration Appeals
5201 Leesburg Pike, Suite 1300
Falls Church, Virginia 22041


January 1999 (Revised)

THE BOARD OF IMMIGRATION APPEALS
Falls Church, Virginia

The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA or the Board) is the highest administrative body for interpreting and applying immigration laws. The Board's principal mission is to ensure that the immigration laws receive fair and uniform application. The Board is composed of 18 Board Members, including the Chairman and Vice Chairman, and 16 permanent Members, who are all appointed by the Attorney General. There are currently 2 vacancies on the Board. The Board reviews case decisions of the Immigration Judges that have been appealed by one of the parties to the case. A Chief Attorney Examiner serves as an alternate Board Member. The Board is divided into panels, which review incoming cases and adjudicate the appeals as quickly as possible. BIA decisions designated for publication are printed in bound volumes entitled Administrative Decisions Under Immigration and Nationality Laws of the United States. The Board hears oral argument on selected cases at its offices in Falls Church, Virginia.

 

Paul W. Schmidt, Chairman

Paul W. Schmidt has been Chairman of the BIA since February 12, 1995. He received his B.A. from Lawrence University in 1970 (cum laude), and his Juris Doctorate from the University of Wisconsin School of Law in 1973 (cum laude; Order of the Coif). While at the University of Wisconsin, he served as an editor of the Wisconsin Law Review. Mr. Schmidt is former Acting General Counsel of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) (1986-1987; 1979-1981), where he was instrumental in developing the rules and procedures to implement the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. He also served as the Deputy General Counsel of INS for 10 years (1978-1987). He was the managing partner of the Washington, D.C. office of Fragomen, Del Rey & Bernsen (1993-95), and also practiced business immigration law with the Washington, D.C., office of Jones, Day, Reavis and Pogue from 1987-92 (Partner, 1990-92). Mr. Schmidt has also served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at George Mason University School of Law. Mr. Schmidt has authored numerous articles on immigration law, and has written extensively for the American Immigration Lawyers Association. He is a member of the American Bar Association, the Federal Bar Association (Member, Immigration Committee), and the Wisconsin and District of Columbia Bars.

 

Mary Maguire Dunne, Vice Chairman

Mary Maguire Dunne has been a Member of the Board since May 1977, and was appointed Vice Chairman of the Board in February 1995. In 1963, she received her B.A. from the College of New Rochelle, and her J.D. from St. John's University School of Law in 1966, where she also served as an editor of the St. John's Law Review. Mrs. Dunne has been an attorney with the Department of Justice since 1966 when she was appointed under the Attorney General's Program for Honor Law Graduates. During her career at the Department of Justice, she has also served as an Assistant United States Attorney in Brooklyn, New York, and as a Special Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York, as well as Chief Attorney Examiner at the Board of Immigration Appeals.

Patricia A. Cole, Co-Vice Chairman

Patricia Cole was appointed as a Board Member in July 1995. Ms. Cole received her B.S. from Wilson College, Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, and her J.D. from the University of Maryland. Prior to her appointment, she was a Senior Policy Analyst at the U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform in Washington, D.C. On detail from the INS, she assisted the Commission in planning and research activities related to the review and evaluation of the Immigration Act of 1990 and alternatives on immigration policy issues. Her former legal positions were with the INS in Washington, D.C., and included Appellate Counsel, Associate General Counsel for the General Law Section, Legislative Counsel, and Assistant General Counsel. She also was a Trial Attorney for the Litigation and Legal Advice Staff in Houston, Texas. She has lectured and participated in numerous seminars and immigration conferences. Ms. Cole is the recipient of several awards including the Attorney General's John Marshall Award for preparation and handling of Legislation; the INS General Counsel's Attorney of the Year Award; and the INS Commissioner's Superior Accomplishment Award.

Lauri S. Filppu

Lauri Steven Filppu became a Board Member in July 1995. Mr. Filppu obtained his undergraduate degree in 1969, and his J.D. in 1973, both from the State University of New York at Buffalo, where he graduated cum laude from law school and served as an editor of the Buffalo Law Review. Prior to his appointment to the Board, Mr. Filppu was a Deputy Director in the Justice Department's Office of Immigration Litigation (OIL). He spent a total of 19 years between OIL and the Criminal Division representing government agencies in Federal court in civil immigration litigation. He started his government career in 1973 as a Staff Attorney with the Board. Among the honors he has received at the Justice Department are the Attorney General's Distinguished Service Award in 1994, and the John Marshall Award in 1987. Mr. Filppu is a member of the New York Bar.

Edward R. Grant

Edward R. Grant was appointed to the Board in January 1998. He received his undergraduate degree in 1979 from Georgetown University, and his Juris Doctorate in 1982 from Northwestern University School of Law. Prior to joining the Executive Office for Immigration Review, Mr. Grant served as counsel to the Subcommittee on Immigration and Claims in the U.S. House of Representatives from February 1995 to January 1998. From 1992 until he joined the subcommittee, he was employed by the Immigration and Naturalization Service in Washington, D.C., where he served as a deputy associate general counsel, Refugee and Asylum Law Division, and as legislative counsel. Mr. Grant was associated with the Chicago, Illinois, law firm of Hinshaw & Culbertson from 1987 through 1990, and with the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, firm of Drinker Biddle & Reath from 1982 to 1984. From 1984 to 1987, he served as executive director and general counsel of Americans United for Life, Chicago, Illinois. He is a member of both the Illinois and Pennsylvania Bars.


John Guendelsberger

John Guendelsberger was appointed to the Board in September 1995. He received his J.D. from Ohio State University College of Law in 1977. He also earned a number of advanced degrees in law including an LL.M. and J.S.D. from Columbia University School of Law and a D.E.A. from the University of Paris (Pantheon-Sorbonne). He worked for three years as a Staff Attorney with Ohio Legal Rights Service, a state agency advocating the rights of persons with mental or developmental disabilities. From 1980 to 1995, he was a Professor of Law at Ohio Northern University College of Law where he specialized in immigration law, comparative law and international law. He has written numerous articles in the area of immigration law and has represented aliens on a pro bono basis before Immigration Judges and the Board of Immigration Appeals. He is a member of the Ohio Bar.


Michael J. Heilman

Michael J. Heilman was appointed to the Board in August 1986. He earned both his undergraduate and law degree from the University of Wisconsin. Prior to his appointment to the Board, he was an Associate General Counsel at the INS, where he specialized in appellate litigation, refugee and asylum law, and legislative affairs. He also served as a Foreign Service Officer with the Department of State in Beirut and Athens. In addition, Mr. Heilman served as an Officer in the U.S. Navy. He is a member of both the Wisconsin and District of Columbia Bars.



David B. Holmes

David B. Holmes was appointed as a Board Member in June 1995. He received his B.A. from Middlebury College in 1970, and graduated with honors in 1973 from the National Law Center, George Washington University. He joined the Board as an Attorney-Advisor in August 1977, and served for 14 years as the Board's Chief Attorney Examiner from July 1981 until his appointment as Board Member. Prior to joining the Board, Mr. Holmes served on active duty as a Captain in the U.S. Army from 1974 to 1977. He is a member of both the District of Columbia and Virginia Bars.



Gerald S. Hurwitz

Gerald S. Hurwitz has been a Board Member since June 1995. He has been with the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) since its creation in 1983. Two years following his graduation from Temple University School of Law in 1974, Mr. Hurwitz joined the Department of Justice as a Trial Attorney with INS in Chicago. In December 1982, he transferred to the INS office in Falls Church, Virginia, as Associate General Counsel for Appellate Litigation until January 1983. He served as Counsel to the Chief Immigration Judge until December 1984 when he was appointed Counsel to the Director, EOIR. He is a member of both the Pennsylvania and District of Columbia Bars.


Philemina M. Jones

Philemina M. Jones was appointed to the Board in October 1997. She received a B.A. in 1973 from Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina, and received a J.D. in 1977 from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Ms. Jones has been with the Office of Immigration Litigation since 1990, starting as a Trial Attorney. In 1994, she became an Assistant Director/Team Leader in that section. From 1977 to 1990, Ms. Jones served in the U.S. Navy in the Judge Advocate General Corps where she held positions from prosecutor and defense counsel to military judge. While stationed at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Ms. Jones served as Special Assistant to the U.S. Attorney, representing the U.S. Navy in civil litigation. Ms. Jones retired from the U.S. Navy Reserves as a Commander in 1998. She is the recipient of several awards including the Attorney General's Award for Distinguished Service and the Executive Office for Immigration Review's Meritorious Public Service Award. Ms. Jones is a member of the North Carolina Bar.

 

Lauren R. Mathon

Lauren R. Mathon was appointed to the Board in September 1995. She received her undergraduate degree from University of California at Berkeley in 1971. She graduated from Lewis and Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon, in 1974, and received a master's degree from University of Southern California in Los Angeles, California, in 1980. Before her appointment to the Board, she served as an Immigration Judge in Los Angeles and San Pedro, California, for 7 years. Ms. Mathon worked as a Trial Attorney with the Immigration and Naturalization Service in El Centro, California, in 1986, and in private immigration practice with attorney David Neumeister in El Monte, California, in 1987. She worked as a Prosecuting Attorney in the District Attorney's Office in Los Angeles, California, for 10 years. Ms. Mathon taught immigration law at Pepperdine University School of Law in Malibu, California, and guest lectured at numerous immigration bar associations and law schools in southern California. She is a member of both the California and District of Columbia Bars.


Anthony C. Moscato

Anthony C. Moscato was appointed as a Board Member in January 1999. Prior to his appointment as the 16th Member of the Board, Mr. Moscato served as Director of the Executive Office for Immigration Review from May 1994 to January 1999. He received his B.A. in 1967 from Columbia University, and his J.D. in 1970 from the National Law Center of the George Washington University. Mr. Moscato previously served in the Justice Department as the Director of the Executive Office for United States Attorneys, the Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Administration, and the Acting Inspector General. Mr. Moscato joined the Justice Department in 1974 and became a Trial Attorney in the Tax Division two years later. He later served as Director of three Department management staffs in the Justice Management Division: the Finance Staff, the Evaluation Staff, and the Property Management and Procurement Staff. Mr. Moscato received the Presidential Meritorious Executive Rank Award in 1991 and 1997, the Edmund Randolph Award in 1993, the Attorney General's Medallion in 1990, and the Attorney General's Award for Distinguished Service in 1988. He is a member of the District of Columbia Bar.

 

Neil P. Miller

Neil P. Miller was appointed to the Board in June 1999. Prior to this, he served as the Chief Attorney Examiner for the Board since October 1995. He received his undergraduate degree in 1967, and his law degree in 1974, both from the University of Arizona. Mr. Miller served as a Deputy Chief Attorney Examiner with the Board from 1987 until his appointment in October 1995 as the Chief Attorney Examiner. He also served as a BIA Attorney-Advisor from 1980 to 1987. Prior to that, Mr. Miller was in private practice in Tucson, Arizona, and worked with the Foreign Operations Section of the Passport Office, Department of State.

 

Lory D. Rosenberg

Lory D. Rosenberg was appointed to the Board in August 1995, and also teaches as a Professional Lecturer at Washington College of Law, American University. A 1976 graduate of Northeastern University School of Law, holding a B.F.A. from New York University, Ms. Rosenberg served as Director of the American Immigration Law Foundation Legal Action Center from 1991 to 1995, practiced immigration law for 18 years in both the private and pro bono sectors, and was a co-founder of the Centro Presente legal and pro bono program for Central American refugees. Her publications include Immigration Law and Crimes (West Law Group 1997); The Fair Hearings Pleadings Manual (AILF 1992); The Legalization Handbook (Clark Boardman Co. 1987); and she is a contributor to Immigration Law and Defense (West Law Group 1997) and Massachusetts Criminal Defense (Butterworth 1991). Ms. Rosenberg previously served on American Immigration Lawyers Association's (AILA) Board of Governors and was Chairperson of the AILA Amicus Committee. She is a member of the National Immigration Project, the National Lawyers Guild, the Federal Bar Association, and the bars of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the District of Columbia.

 

Lori Scialabba

Lori Scialabba was appointed to the Board in March 1998. She received her undergraduate degree in 1982 from the University of Maryland, and her Juris Doctorate in 1985 from Memphis State University. Ms. Scialabba served as Deputy General Counsel for the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) in Washington, D.C., from April 1994 to March 1998. From 1991 to 1994, she served as Associate General Counsel, Civil Litigation Section, INS. Ms. Scialabba worked as a Trial Attorney with the Department of Justice's Civil Division from 1989 to 1991. From 1986 to 1989, she served as Assistant General Counsel, INS.

Fred W. Vacca

Fred W. Vacca was appointed to the Board in July 1981. He attended St. John's University in New York City and is a 1962 graduate of the College of Business Administration, and a 1965 graduate of the School of Law. His career began at the BIA on September 2, 1975, as a staff attorney. He also served as an alternate Board Member, executive assistant to the Chairman, and chief attorney examiner for several years before his present appointment. Mr. Vacca has held a variety of positions in the Federal Government including trial attorney for the Federal Communications Commission and staff attorney for the Board of Veterans' Appeals. Mr. Vacca served on active duty as a commissioned officer in the United States Navy from 1965 -1968. On December 1, 1991, he retired from the Naval Reserve with the rank of Captain, having served 26 years with two tours as a commanding officer. He is admitted to practice law in the State of New York and the District of Columbia.

 

Gustavo D. Villageliu

Gustavo D. Villageliu was appointed as a Board Member in July 1995. He graduated from the University of Iowa College of Law in 1977 (cum laude). While attending law school, Mr. Villageliu served as a legal clerk-research assistant with the University from September 1975 to May 1976, and as a Johnson County Attorney prosecutor intern in Iowa City, Iowa. He joined the Board as a staff attorney in January 1978, and received numerous achievement awards after specializing in war criminal, investor, and criminal alien cases. He is a member of Amnesty International and an immigrant refugee from Cuba. In September 1989, he moved to Miami, Florida, as an Immigration Judge, managing both detained and non-detained dockets, as well as the Florida Northern Region Institutional Criminal Alien Hearing Docket. Mr. Villageliu is a member of the Florida and District of Columbia Bars.

 

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