Holy Cross Ministries will be hosting its second annual Sister Kathleen Moroney Legal Service Award Luncheon to recognize instrumental individuals and organizations in the legal immigration law sphere, who share HCM’s vision for just, compassionate, sustainable and inclusive communities. HCM’s Legal Service Award Luncheon was established to commemorate Sister Kathleen Moroney’s tremendous contributions to Utah’s legal immigration community through her work in founding the Legal Immigration Department at Holy Cross Ministries and providing legal immigration services to the most vulnerable among us; as well as to honor key members of the legal immigration community who exemplify her spirit of service through three awards.
- When: Thursday, May 30, 2019. The VIP Reception will be from 11:00 - 12:00 pm and the Luncheon / Award Ceremony will be from 12:00 - 2:00 pm
- Where: The University of Utah’s S.J. Quinney College of Law, 383 South University St, SLC UT 84112 (6th floor event space)
- What: An event to honor outstanding legal services providers and recognize the following award recipients:
- Philanthropic Firm of the Year: Perretta Law Office
- Innovative Agency of the Year Award: Moab Valley Multicultural Center
- Moroney Legal Service Award: Tanya Micic and Anna Springer
ABOUT SISTER KATHLEEN MORONEY, CSC
Sister Kathleen’s first assignment was from 1961 to 1967at Mount Carmel Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, where she worked in various positions as an accountant and finally as an Assistant Controller. During that time she graduated from The Ohio State University with a BS in Business with a major in Finance. She was also the treasurer at Cardinal Cushing College in Brookline, Massachusetts for one year. Sister Kathleen continued to serve in various positions in Congregation ministries as an accountant. In 1976 she entered the law school at the University of Notre Dame, and graduated in 1979, having passed the Indiana Bar Exam in February 1979. Sister Kathleen worked as an attorney for 8 years for the Generalate of the Sisters of the Holy Cross and for 2 years she worked in parish ministry with low-income individuals in Brazil. In 1989 Sister Kathleen was elected to Congregation Leadership and served as the General Councilor for Finance for 10 years. She then spent a year of sabbatical learning Spanish and also immigration law, working in Catholic Charities in Washington, DC. Sister Kathleen then moved to Salt Lake City, Utah, and with the assistance of Aden Batar at Catholic Community Services, she began the Immigration Department at Holy Cross Ministries in September 2000.
Sister Verónica Fajardo, CSC
Emmie Gardner, MSW, LCSW, CEO at Holy Cross Ministries
Jeanne Jardine, former English teacher/instructor; Community Volunteer
Wayne McCormack, E. W. Thode Professor of Law, University of Utah
Maria Mullahi, MPA, Development Specialist at Holy Cross Ministries
Patricia Sanders, Director of Development and Communications at Holy Cross Ministries
Alyssa Williams, Immigration Attorney/Immigration Program Manager at Catholic Community Services of Utah
Luzmila Zepeda, Department of Justice (DOJ) Accredited Representative
Marlene F. Gonzalez, Esq.
2019 Award Recipients
Philanthropic Firm of the Year Award
Perretta Law Office
Perretta Law has been representing clients in removal (deportation) proceedings for over fifteen years. They are experienced in asylum (refugee) applications and have represented individuals from Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Former Soviet Union, South America, and Europe. They provide trainings to other immigration attorneys in this area and in conjunction with the immigration court’s pro bono initiative. Perretta Law Office also represents individuals who are in removal proceedings because of criminal convictions and work on post conviction relief in Utah. Leonor Perretta has always answered the call to take on asylum cases pro bono and low bono when there is a need. She has demonstrated a willingness to take on difficult cases all while making sure that she supervises and supports her staff. She is also always willing to share her knowledge with others, including peers and non attorneys who want to serve the asylum seekers here in Utah.
Innovative Agency of the Year Award
Moab Valley Multicultural Center
In 2005, public school teacher Leticia Bentley was being called on more and more to serve as an interpreter and advocate for Moab’s growing immigrant population. As the need for bilingual and bicultural education, advocacy, and crisis intervention grew, Bentley recruited a core of dedicated volunteers who officially formed the Moab Valley Multicultural Center in 2007. Today, the Center employs 6 bilingual staff, has hundreds of volunteers, and provides thousands of hours of direct service in 5 different program areas annually. The Moab Valley Multicultural Center's mission is to build bridges across language and culture through family support, community collaboration and education and they are the only resource dedicated to the community in and around Moab and Grand County.
Moroney Legal Service Award
Tatjana Micic and Anna Springer
Tatjana Micic originally came to the U.S. through the International Rescue Committee in Salt Lake City and eventually became a caseworker, helping to resettle other new refugee families. She began doing immigration services for those families and became an accredited provider in 2002. Anna Springer joined the immigration team in 2012 providing citizenship classes to low education and pre-literate refugees so that they would be able to pass the citizenship test and enjoy the full advantages of citizenship and accredited in 2014. These dedicated professionals help families reunite, resolve challenges, travel abroad, and become permanent residents and U.S. Citizens. Both Tatjana and Anna follow in the great tradition laid down by Sister Kathleen Moroney as pioneers of helping individuals in this community with legal immigration services through dedicated service. Tatjana is the senior staff member at the IRC in SLC and has been providing immigration support services since the early years of the office's inception. She has client families that she has literally served for decades and has detailed knowledge and connections with every major refugee group that has come to Salt Lake City in the last 20 years (as well as other immigrant groups). Her community, institutional and technical knowledge are a great resource for those seeking immigration support, and her influence can be seen through the many individuals who are U.S citizens thanks to her efforts. Anna is a pioneer in helping support the most vulnerable and underserved of this already-vulnerable community through her work in establishing the citizenship classes for those who will have the most trouble in passing the citizenship test. This has important benefit implications for these individuals down the road if they are unable to reach citizenship.