Murthy Law Firm Employee Profile : Pam Genise, Attorney26 Feb 2010
Pam Genise always wanted to be in a profession that served people and promoted social justice, but she says she got into immigration law by accident. After college, Pam joined the Brethren Volunteer Service, and was asked to work in their legislative office in Washington DC, lobbying for legislation to promote social justice. “I watched good initiatives fail, over and over, and I thought that if I can’t change the law, maybe I should figure out how to help people within the confines of existing law. So I decided to go to law school.”
In law school, Pam became an advocate for survivors of domestic violence at the George Washington University law school’s legal clinics. “That’s where I found out that domestic violence cases often have immigration issues wrapped up in them. I took an immigration class and I loved it, for a lot of the same reasons I enjoyed family law. It wasn’t just about forms and paperwork and moving money around, it was about interaction with people, about being involved in their lives. I had also always been interested in international issues, and was an Asian studies minor in college. Immigration law combined those interests and turned out to be a great fit for my personality.”
After law school, Pam spent four months at a patent law firm, before getting a job at an immigration firm in Washington DC, through a recommendation from her immigration law professor – the same class she had passed with an A+. Three years later, Pam joined the Murthy Law Firm. “Back in the summer of 2007, the firm was expanding rapidly, to meet the demand to file so many cases with current priority dates in a limited time period. It was a good time to start, if you liked adrenaline!”
Pam is now a Supervisory Attorney in the Green Card department of the Murthy Law Firm, and spends a typical day answering questions, reviewing documents, filing cases and writing briefs to the USCIS and the Administrative Appeals Office. “My job is primarily to make sure that immigrant cases have all of the information and documentation up front in order for the case to be successful. This means planning ahead and thinking strategically so that not just the labor certification, but also the immigrant petition and ultimately the adjustment of status application can be approved.
Pam clearly enjoys her work at the firm. “I love the organization. The staff is smart and efficient, which I love, and it is great to be in an environment where they encourage you to grow and develop. I like having time to develop special expertise in particular areas, to learn all about the nitty-gritty details and subtle nuances of employment-based permanent immigration.” Pam’s mastery of the details has led to her other job, teaching business immigration law at University of Baltimore Law School. “I enjoy all the interaction with the students; sharing what I’ve learned and why I love this field of law. I remember taking a similar immigration law class, and having it turn into my career. It’s nice to think this can happen to some of my students and maybe I can help them to find a career they’ll enjoy as much as I love mine.”