About Us

NILC Immigrant Justice Fund relies upon its extensive connections with advocacy groups nationwide, combined with its staff’s federal advocacy experience, expertise on issues that affect immigrants’ daily lives, and distinctive use of policy, legal and communications strategies, to ensure that immigrants’ rights advocates have a powerful impact on the shape and nature of immigration reform policies that come under consideration in Congress. Since its inception, NILC IJF has played an integral role in national efforts to: promote a broad and humane overhaul of the nation’s immigration systems; amplify the need for reforms of the nation’s immigration enforcement policies so that they protect civil and human rights; advocate for policies that address the needs of immigrant youth; and promote the need for immigration reform to expand aspiring citizens’ access to the programs and services they need to live healthy lives.

Incorporated on February 12, 2013, NILC IJF (the “Fund” or the “Organization”) was incorporated. It is exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code (“IRC”) and corresponding provisions of state law.


Marielena Hincapié

Marielena-headshot-3-188x125Marielena Hincapié is the executive director of the NILC Immigrant Justice Fund. She is highly respected for her legal and political strategies and is seen as a bridge builder within the immigrants’ rights field as well as across broader social justice sectors.

Fully bilingual and bicultural, Ms. Hincapié serves as a resource and is often interviewed by media outlets such as Univisión, Telemundo, CNN en Español, MSNBC, the New York Times, and theLos Angeles Times, among others. She also is a frequent lecturer at national and international conferences, addressing issues of migration, and she works closely with emerging leaders in the social justice movement.

Before joining NILC IJF, Ms. Hincapié worked for the Legal Aid Society of San Francisco’s Employment Law Center, where she founded the Center’s Immigrant Workers’ Rights Project. She holds a juris doctor degree from Northeastern University School of Law, served on the American Bar Association’s Commission on Immigration, and is currently a member of the Jobs with Justice and Welcome.US boards of directors.

Among the awards Ms. Hincapié has received are Univision’s Corazón Award for 2013, in honor of her commitment to the Latino community. The media company, which honors one organization and one individual each year, cited her leadership at the National Immigration Law Center as a key reason she received the award. In 2014, she received the Latina of Influence award from Hispanic Lifestyle, the National Public Service Award from Stanford Law School, and was selected as a Prime Mover Fellow by the Hunt Alternatives Fund. She also recently served as the Northeastern University School of Law Daynard Distinguished Visiting Fellow and the Practitioner-in-Residence at the Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law.

Ms. Hincapié immigrated as a child from Medellín, Colombia, to Central Falls, Rhode Island. She is the youngest of 10 children.

Follow Marielena on Twitter: @MarielenaNILC

Executive Assistant: Claudia Lara


Allen Erenbaum (Chair)
Erenbaum Legal Strategies, Inc.

Lilia Garcia-Brower
Executive Director
Maintenance Corporation Trust Fund

Sara Gould
Philanthropic Advisor,
Organizational Consultant, Coach

Cynthia Lange
Fragomen Worldwide