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The Director's Office: Alejandro Mayorkas Receives Award from Immigrant Rights Group, Hosts Chicago Community Leaders Forum on Immigration

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Director Mayorkas
On Thursday, June 2, 2011, Director Alejandro Mayorkas of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services traveled to Chicago to receive an award from one of Illinois’ most prominent immigrant advocacy groups and to host a White House-sponsored business leaders’ forum on immigration reform.

In the evening of June 2, The Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) hosted more than 300 people at its 25th anniversary celebration.  ICIRR is a state-wide coalition of 138 organizations dedicated to promoting the rights of immigrants and refugees to full and equal participation in the civic, cultural, social, and political life of our diverse society.  Director Mayorkas was honored with ICIRR’s Golden Door Award for his leadership of USCIS in its efforts to ensure that United States citizenship remains a valued and accessible benefit to all who are eligible.  ICIRR singled out the Obama Administration’s decision in 2010 to keep the naturalization fee flat despite required cost-based increases in other immigration benefit categories.  This was ICIRR’s inauguration of its Golden Door Award.

Earlier in the day, as part of the Obama Administration’s initiative to elevate the debate around immigration reform, Director Mayorkas joined Chicago area business leaders to discuss the need and advocate for comprehensive immigration reform.  The roundtable discussion drew leaders from all sectors of the community, including the Chamber of Commerce, the Illinois Restaurant Association, and representatives from financial services, building development, non-profits, and the clergy.  The roundtable’s participants shared with Director Mayorkas the need for comprehensive immigration reform, ideas for further engagement and mobilization, and the Chicago community’s plans to promote the needed reforms.

This is the first installment of “The Director’s Office” - a new series of posts from Director Mayorkas that will appear regularly on this blog.