Advisors & Ambassadors

Jake Benhabib

Jake is an immigration and human rights lawyer based in Brooklyn, New York. He is currently a staff attorney at the International Rescue Committee. Previously, he was a staff attorney at Catholic Charities, and a staff attorney and legal fellow at Project Citizenship. He has a JD with Honors in the Concentration of International Law from Boston University, and a BA, magna cum laude, from Rutgers University. Jake is the son and grandson of former refugees from Cuba, and the great-grandson of Sephardic Jewish immigrants from Turkey. He served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Kyrgyzstan, and speaks conversational Kyrgyz and Spanish.

Tiffany Brathwaite

Tiffany is the office manager for the Boston Celtics headquarters where she has been for the past 4 seasons.  Along with the many hats she wears in her current role, in 2020 she became the pilar lead for the Voting and Civic Engagement Committee under the newly formed social justice initiative of the company called Boston Celtics United.  Previously, she was a personal chef for several years and taught baking classes for middle and high school students in Lexington MA.  Tiffany became very passionate about naturalization when going through the process with her dad who was a permanent resident for over 30 years.  By seeing firsthand the sometimes difficult and long process made her think of others who don’t have the help her dad had and became very passionate about breaking down barriers for people in need. In her free time, Tiffany enjoys cooking for fun, baking bread, reading a good book and weekend getaways.

Juan Davila

Juan is a Senior Vice President at Bank of the West working in their corporate group where he works in helping large corporate clients define their financing strategies. He has 30 years of experience in international Banking leading teams on diverse areas of Risk Management and was previously Chief Risk and Credit Officer for Santander.

Juan and his wife Susana are first generation immigrants and became US citizens in 2015. They recently moved with their 3 children to San Francisco after 10 lovely years in Boston where he was a Board member at Project Citizenship

He is a graduate of ICADE (Madrid) and Middlesex University (London) and a Harvard Business School Alumni.

Deva Hirsch

Deva Hirsch is an accomplished philanthropic and nonprofit professional with local, national and international leadership experience. She is Executive Director of the Rich Foundation in Atlanta, Georgia. Deva previously served as Executive Director of the Paul & Phyllis Fireman Charitable Foundation in Boston, the Executive Director of the Abraham J. & Phyllis Katz Foundation in Atlanta and as Co-Director and Vice President for Program at the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation.  Deva is the Founder and President Emeritus of Hands on Tokyo, a cross-cultural clearinghouse matching corporate and volunteer interests with community needs. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Atlanta Music Project and the Advisory Committees for GreenLight Fund Atlanta, Project Citizenship and the U.S.-Japan Council. Deva has an MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Nonprofit Management from Tufts University and a BA in Journalism and Public Relations from the University of Georgia.

Jennifer Jean-Michel

Jennifer is Corporate Counsel at Cognex Corporation, a public technology company in Natick, Massachusetts, where she specializes in securities filings, M&A, ESG, commercial agreements and sales to the life sciences industry. Jennifer was previously a Corporate Associate at DLA Piper LLP where she represented public and private companies in equity financings, mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance matters. Jennifer is a dedicated pro bono attorney and has volunteered for a number of local immigration organizations, including Project Citizenship. She holds a J.D. from Boston University, and a B.S., magna cum laude, from Boston University. In her free time, Jennifer enjoys cuddling with her two cats, exploring local bike trails and getting in an exercise class.

Jim McGarry

Jim is a partner in Goodwin Procter’s Consumer Financial Services Litigation Group who specializes in complex commercial litigation, with an emphasis on the defense of financial institutions in consumer class actions, enforcement actions and complex business litigation. As a member of this practice, Jim has defended against state and nationwide class actions and multi-district class actions around the country. His work has covered a wide variety of consumer class actions and government investigations facing the financial services industry, including banks and mortgage servicers in a host of challenges to mortgage servicing, fair lending and predatory lending practices and auto lenders in loan origination and servicing matters.  Jim is a member of the American, Massachusetts and Boston Bar Associations, and has written and spoken on a variety of topics pertaining to financial services and class action litigation. He attended Seton Hall University where he obtained his B.A. in 1985 magna cum laude. He graduated from Rutgers School of Law in 1993 magna cum laude. He is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Appleseed Center for Law and Justice. Jim is married with two teenage daughters, both of whom have also volunteered for Project Citizenship.

Mike McGurk

Mike McGurk has over 30 years of experience in virtually all aspects of patent law. Working with clients ranging from small start-ups to large Fortune 100 companies, he provides counsel in due diligence matters, global portfolio development and adversarial proceedings. Mike’s practice is informed by his background as a patent examiner for the USPTO, as a litigator for ten years, and as an expert in due diligence matters large and small. His extensive due diligence experience includes pre-litigation, acquisition, in-license, freedom-to-operate product and/or process clearance, design around, validity and patentability matters. Mike works primarily in the pharmaceutical, chemical, medical device, clean energy and mechanical technologies.

Nancy Moss

Nancy L. Moss is a communications professional with decades of experience in both profit and not-for-profit settings. She most recently served as communications director at edX, the online learning initiative founded by Harvard and MIT. Previously Nancy was head of the Boston office of RF|Binder Partners, a global New York-based communications consultancy, where she worked with corporate and nonprofit clients including CVS, Dunkin’ Brands, Staples and Microsoft. Before joining RF|Binder, Nancy was Director of Global Public Relations for Reebok International.

An accredited member, APR, of the Public Relations Society of America, Nancy has a B.A., with honors, from Simmons College and an M.A. from the University of Colorado.  Nancy has served as an adjunct faculty member at Boston University’s College of Communication.

Carolyn Osteen

Carolyn is a retired partner with the Boston office of Ropes & Gray LLP and was a member of its tax department. She joined the firm in 1970 and her practice has focused on exempt organizations, including representation of a number of colleges, universities, museums, and hospitals. She speaks regularly on issues of charitable giving and tax and corporate problems of tax exempt organizations. Carolyn is the co author of the “Harvard Manual Tax Aspects of Charitable Giving” last published in its 9th Edition as well as co author of the BNA portfolio, “Charitable Contributions for Corporations.” She has served as a member of the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Public Charities Advisory Committee. She has served as a Fellow of The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, as a Regent of the American College of Tax Counsel and on the Governing Council of the Tax Section of the American Bar Association. She has also chaired the Exempt Organizations Committee of the Tax Section. Carolyn is an alumna of Wellesley College and holds LL.B. and LL.M. degrees from Duke University School of Law, where she serves as a member of the Board of Visitors. Carolyn is an emeritus trustee of the Boston Athenaeum and serves as a Trustee of Boston Preparatory Charter School’s support foundation. She has served as a trustee of many New England non-profit organizations and continues to work in a volunteer capacity with various non-profit organizations including The Trustees of Reservations, Historic Boston, Incorporated, and Native Plant Trust. Carolyn is married to Robert T. Osteen, M.D. (B.A., Dartmouth College), and has two daughters.

O’Neil Outar

O’Neil A.A. Outar is a first-generation college student, educated in NY, NH, and MA. He holds a Master of Arts in Urban and Environmental Public Policy and a Bachelor of Arts, both from Tufts University. As of 2018, O’Neil has served as Vice President of Institutional Engagement at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where he has created innovative and successful fundraising advancements. O’Neil has extensive experience in the development and advancement field and has helped raise over $9 billion dollars for several institutions. Previous development positions have included Interim Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement at the University of Pittsburgh, Senior Associate Dean and Director of Development for the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University, the first Vice President for Advancement at the University of Alberta, and several similar roles at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology in various campaigns and at his alma mater, Tufts University. In addition to these roles, he is also a special advisor to The Guyana Foundation, a trustee of the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, a Commonwealth Study Conference Leader, a Ditchley Scholar, a member of the World Economic Forum’s Knowledge Advisory Group, an MIT Leader-to-Leader Fellow, and a former member of the Board of Directors for Project Citizenship – where he now serves as an advisor and ambassador to the organization.

Kelly Renaud

Kelly is a business immigration attorney advising organizations of all sizes. She has extensive experience with complex applications for professionals in the EB1 and O-1 classifications in the biotech and life sciences industry. She is currently an associate with Fragomen in their Boston office and has volunteered with Project Citizenship and other local immigration non-profits representing folks in bond and removal proceedings, participating in citizenship clinics, and providing informational sessions following immigration policy changes. Kelly is a member of her firm’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion network, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the Massachusetts and American Bar Association, and in her spare time enjoys learning languages and trying new whole food plant-based recipes.

Janet Rickershauser

Janet Rickershauser counsels nonprofit organizations on a broad array of governance and tax issues and works with individuals and families on charitable giving strategies such as creating a family foundation or making an endowment gift.
As an experienced estate and tax planning attorney, Janet counsels individuals and families on complex estate planning and charitable giving strategies, such as creating and administering family foundations, establishing charitable remainder trusts, and making endowment gifts.
Janet holds a J.D. from New York University School of Law, an M.A. from Columbia University, and a B.A., magna cum laude, from Brown University, and she speaks French and some Russian and Spanish. 

Simon Ringrose

Simon is an experienced financial services sales professional who became a US citizen in April 2017 and lives in Charlestown.   Simon has worked for the UN World Food Programme in China and for Reuters in London, Nicosia, and Boston.

Currently employed by Quant Insight, a UK-based financial data and analytics start-up, Simon worked previously at EPFR Global, a Cambridge-based financial data startup sold to Informa Plc. He has a deep interest in news, the investment process, and global markets.

Active in community affairs Simon volunteers weekly with St Marks US Citizenship classes and with East Boston’s Allies for Immigrants ESOL classes.  He is currently on the Vestry at St John’s Church, Charlestown and has taught children’s religious education classes there for 15 years.

Married with three children, Simon studied at Tufts, Beijing Normal University, and the London School of Economics.   In his free time he enjoys kayaking at Belle Isle and hiking in the New England outdoors.

Charles Sanders

Charles is a partner in Latham & Watkins Litigation Department. He has market-leading, first chair intellectual property litigation experience.  Formerly with Goodwin Procter’s Intellectual Property Litigation Group, Charles focused on intellectual property matters with emphasis on patent litigation. He has represented clients in Asia, Europe and the United States as lead counsel in district courts throughout the United States and before the U.S. International Trade Commission. He has been named a Massachusetts Super Lawyer by Law & Politics and Boston magazines.  With a background in chemistry and physics, he has represented clients in a diverse range of technologies. Charles has also handled antitrust, false advertising, trademark infringement, trade dress infringement, and unfair competition claims. He is married with a daughter and an avid fan of baseball and basketball.  Charles is a frequent and dedicated pro bono volunteer for Project Citizenship.  He has volunteered at numerous workshops, and has provided many hours of pro bono service assisting citizenship applicants as well as a Board member.

Mary Teague

Mary is a Senior Vice President and Senior Legal Counsel at Santander Bank and its parent holding company in Boston, Massachusetts, where she serves as Deputy Corporate Secretary, advises the board and management on corporate governance matters, and supports the activities of the board, board committees, and executive management committees. Prior to her role at Santander, Mary practiced law at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft in New York, after which she worked at an advisory firm outside of Boston and facilitated education sessions for Fortune 500 directors regarding emerging corporate governance matters.  Mary earned a J.D. from Boston University and a B.A. from Kenyon College. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband and three children –  and their cat and dog who are diligently trying to understand one another.

Melanie Torres

Melanie currently works as Director of Community Engagement at ASG. Prior to her role at ASG, Melanie worked at Project Citizenship for over 6 years, ultimately serving as Deputy Director. Melanie holds a BA in International Relations from Boston University, and has served on the Commission for Immigrant Rights and Citizenship in the City of Cambridge. When she isn’t working, or training her puppy, Melanie can be found playing or watching soccer with friends and family.

Amy Wax

Amy M. Wax has her own practice and has been exclusively practicing immigration law since 2000.  She is on the Dedham Human Rights Commission and was adjunct clinical faculty for the Immigration Clinic at Boston College Law School for many years.  She is currently a committee chair in the Immigration Law Section of the Boston Bar Association.  Attorney Wax was the sole attorney at the Committee on Refugees from El Salvador for several years and also worked as a staff attorney at Catholic Charities.

Amy handles all types of immigration cases, including family-based petitions, consular processing, deportation, NACARA, asylum, naturalization and applications for relief for victims of domestic violence.  She is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese and frequently gives presentations to the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking communities.  She also has taught several years for Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education.  She holds a J.D. from Boston College Law School.

Amy has been a dedicated pro bono attorney for Project Citizenship providing a Crimmigration training, lending her immigration expertise, and serving on the Board.

Myles Weisenberg

Myles Weisenberg was Vice President of Development at Brandeis University for nearly 20 years, overseeing a $1B Campaign. Prior to that he was President of The Miriam Hospital Foundation and first Executive Director of Development for Lifespan Hospitals in Rhode Island.  He is a consultant for Mystic Aquarium and volunteers at numerous not-for-profits.
He received his BA from Brandeis University and his MBA from Columbia University. He lives in Boston with his wife Marsha, daughter Jamie and their puppy,  Apollo.

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