ImmigrationWorks USA’s 2010 summit, held in Seattle on August 11 and 12, brought together some 150 employers who rely on immigrant workers for a packed day of panels, speeches and strategy sessions. Mostly small to medium-sized business owners, participants came from as far away as New York and New Mexico and from every economic sector that hires immigrants – high-tech, the service sector, agriculture and seasonal businesses.

The program featured four keynote speakers (from left to right): veteran political journalist Morton Kondracke, U.S. Representative Rick Larsen (D-WA), high-tech entrepreneur and scholar Vivek Wadhwa and Washington Senator Patty Murray (taped remarks).


A panel of business representatives and former officials from Washington DC reported on recent changes in immigration enforcement and visa policies. From left to right: National Restaurant Association vice president Angelo Amador, former director of ICE policy and planning Patrick Shen, Coalition for a Working Oregon co-chair Jeff Stone, former USCIS chief counsel Lynden Melmed and former DOL assistant secretary Leon Sequeira.

Employers from a range of sectors – a fruit grower, a winemaker, a restaurateur, a biotech entrepreneur and an executive of a staffing firm – discussed how immigrant workers help keep U.S. businesses running and contributing to a dynamic, competitive economy. Pictured here: James McIntire, Kelly Services (left) and Rob ValicoffValicoff Fruit Company.

Reform advocates from pro-immigration business coalitions across the U.S. discussed their most successful stratagems and plans for the year ahead. Pictured here (left to right): Andrew Rigie, ImmigrationWorks New York, Brent Olmstead, Idaho Business Coalition for Immigration Reform and Gene Baca, New Mexico Immigration Coalition.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce SVP Randel Johnson presented highlights from a new report commissioned by the Chamber and the American Council on International Personnel, Regaining America’s Competitive Advantage: Making our Immigration System Work.

ImmigrationWorks unveiled a national petition drive. Pro-immigration business activists across the U.S. will recruit colleagues, clients and suppliers from all economic sectors to sign a message to President Obama. The petition’s bottom line: no reform can hope to work for U.S. businesses or the U.S. economy if it does not include adequate visas for immigrant workers at all skill levels to enter the country legally in years ahead. 

A panel of premier immigration lawyers answered questions about existing law - high-skilled and lesser-skilled visa programs, audits, E-Verify and more.

ImmigrationWorks president Tamar Jacoby announced the IW 2010 HERO AWARDS honoring four pro-immigration business activists from IW state affiliates. The recipients: Andrew Rigie from the New York State Restaurant Association and ImmigrationWorks New York, Gene Baca, co-owner of Bueno Foods and leader of the New Mexico Immigration Coalition, Dan Fazio of Washington State Farm Bureau and ImmigrationWorks Washington and Mike Gilsdorf, co-owner of the Arapahoe Acres Nursery and former chair of Colorado Employers for Immigration Reform.


Diane Butler Lane Powell, Jaime Castaneda National Milk Producers Federation, Luis Ricardo Fraga University of Washington, Chris Helm Davis Wright Tremaine, Kevin Lederman Cowan Miller & Lederman, Louis Moffa Jr. Montgomery McCracken, Robert Overell PhaseRx, Joel Paget Ryan Swanson & Cleveland, Cristina Quinn Wild Ginger, David Ramey Ramey Wine Cellars, Tom Roach ImmigrationWorks Washington, Renee Sinclair U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Greg Siskind Siskind Susser and Bonnie Stern Wasser AILA Washington chapter. 



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