Jessica Castellanos rejoined KIND in January 2021 as the Managing Attorney of the Seattle field office. She has worked as a removal defense attorney in detained and non-detained contexts and was previously a Pro Bono Coordinating Attorney in KIND’s Los Angeles field office. Most recently, Jessica was a Staff Attorney and Clinical Supervisor at the East Bay Community Law Center where she had multiple roles, including serving as the lead attorney for UC Berkeley’s Undocumented Student Program, clinical legal educator for UC Berkeley law students, and removal defense attorney. Jessica began practicing immigration law as a Staff Attorney with the Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project in Arizona. Over the course of her career, Jessica has represented unaccompanied children, adjudicated complex and highly sensitive fear-based protection claims as an asylum officer, mentored pro bono attorneys, provided legal assistance to detained immigrants in some of the most remote settings, and managed high-volume caseloads on the detained and non-detained dockets. She is excited to return to KIND to support an exceptional team of advocates in advancing and defending the due process rights of children navigating our complex immigration system. Jessica received her B.A. from UC Berkeley, where she majored in Sociology, and her J.D. from the University of California College of the Law, San Francisco, where she was the co-founder of Hastings Students for Immigrants’ Rights. Jessica was the recipient of the CALI Excellence for the Future Award for her participation in the Refugee and Human Rights Clinic. She is licensed to practice law in California and Washington.
Kelsey is a Supervising Attorney at KIND’s Seattle office where she works with detained youth in Washington. Kelsey joined KIND in September 2018. She received her J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law. During law school, she interned with the Northwest Justice Project Farmworker Justice program, participated in the International Human Rights Clinic, and worked for a private immigration attorney. Prior to law school, Kelsey worked in the U.S. refugee admissions program with the International Rescue Committee in Maryland and the Resettlement Support Center in Kenya.
Yohana supports the Seattle office as Supervising Attorney of Released programs. Yohana joined KIND in 2017, after initially volunteering with KIND’s Newark office. In 2021, Yohana also supported the work of KIND’s European Initiative as a consultant. Before joining KIND, Yohana’s advocacy led her to work with such organizations as the New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice, the Political Asylum/Immigration Representation (PAIR) Project of Boston, and Centro Legal de la Raza of Oakland. Yohana received her J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law and holds an M.A. in Francophone Studies from UCLA and a B.A. in French from the University of Kentucky. She is fluent in Spanish and French.
Natasha joined the Seattle Field Office in February 2022 in the role of Senior Attorney. Before joining KIND, Natasha practiced immigration law in New York City where she specialized in appellate and federal court advocacy and removal defense. Natasha received her LLM from Pace University where she interned at the United Nations, focusing on the plight of climate refugees. She received her JD from Western New England School of Law where she spent a semester abroad studying with the Tibetan government in exile in Dharamsala, India. Natasha is fluent in Hindi, Punjabi, and Urdu and, outside of work, enjoys traveling, reading, and spending time with her husband and two Maine Coon cats.
Giselle is a Senior Attorney in KIND’s Seattle office working with the City of Seattle and King County’s Expanded Legal Defense Network. They graduated with their J.D. from Vermont Law School and received their B.A. from Norwich University. During law school, they interned with the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, the Vermont Defender General’s Office, and participated in their school’s immigration clinic. Prior to working at KIND, Giselle worked in private practice as a family law attorney who focused on juvenile cases.
Taylor Faranda is a Senior Attorney in KIND's Seattle office working with youth detained in Washington. Taylor joined KIND in August 2019 and represented youth released from ORR custody and living in Washington for over three years before transitioning to her current role with the detained programs team. She graduated with her J.D. from the University of Connecticut School of Law in 2018 and received her B.A. in Cross-Cultural Studies and Spanish from Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington in 2012. During law school, Taylor participated in various organizations providing legal aid to immigrants and refugees and she was a clinical student in her law school's Asylum and Human Rights Clinic and DACA and Immigration Detention Clinic. After graduating from law school, Taylor completed a clerkship with the Honorable Steven D. Ecker on the Connecticut Supreme Court. She is licensed to practice law in Washington.
Bio coming soon!
Emily Justin (she/her) is a Staff Attorney for the Released team at Kids in Need of Defense where she provides trauma informed representation for young people navigating the immigration system. She joined KIND in January of 2023 in the Seattle Office. Prior to working at KIND, Emily was a Right to Counsel Attorney at Housing Justice Project representing tenants facing eviction. Emily is committed to social justice work and dismantling oppressive systems. She has worked with young people experiencing homelessness, helped folks access public benefits, and worked with students and families facing civil rights violations at the Department of Education. Emily strongly believes that all people deserve quality representation and holistic advocacy. In her free time, Emily enjoys thrift shopping and playing with her cat.
Wendy Martinez Hurtado
Wendy S. Martinez Hurtado joined the Legal Programs Team at KIND’s Seattle Office in August of 2022. Wendy is originally from Sinaloa, Mexico and immigrated to the U.S. at the age of seven. Wendy is driven by her intersectional identities as an undocumented Mexican woman and daughter of immigrant workers. For the past decade, she has advocated for and alongside immigrant communities in Washington state primarily serving undocumented youth and their families. Wendy received her J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law in Seattle, WA. During law school, Wendy co-founded Student Advocates for Immigrant Justice, was a student attorney in the Immigration Clinic, interned at Kids in Need of Defense (KIND), and worked as a judicial extern for Chief Justice González of the Washington State Supreme Court. Additionally, she served as a 2020 Peggy Browning Fellow at Fair Work Center, a 2021 Laurel Rubin Farmworker Justice Fellow at Columbia Legal Services, and a student liaison in the Minority & Justice Commission. Wendy is bilingual in Spanish and English.
Linz Adams (he/him) joined the released team at KIND's Seattle Office in April 2023. Linz received his J.D. degree from The City University of New York School of Law and is licensed to practice in New York and Washington State. Prior to working at KIND, Linz established and oversaw a program at the Seattle Immigration Court to provide legal assistance to pro se respondents. Linz has also practiced in New York City as a public defender and immigration attorney representing non-citizens in criminal and immigration proceedings. Outside of work Linz enjoys traveling, following sports, and spending time with his girlfriend, dog, and two cats.
Vanessa Brown joins KIND in May 2023 as a Staff Attorney in the Seattle office. Vanessa was born and raised in El Paso, Texas, and is an alumnus of the University of New Mexico School of Law. Since 2016, Vanessa has dedicated her career to public interest through her work with non-profit legal service providers, the Department of Justice and the Texas Attorney General. Vanessa is a second generation Mexican American and the first attorney in her family. In her free time, she hikes with her partner and brown Doberman “Cuffee”.
Holly joined Kids in Need of Defense in January of 2017. Previously Holly served as case manager and paralegal for various immigration legal service providers in Texas and Kentucky. Holly studied social work and Spanish at the University of Kentucky.
Selina Villagomez Marinas
Selina received her bachelor's degree from Washington State University. After graduating, she worked as a Senior Paralegal in the greater Seattle area. She has worked primarily in the immigration, family law and personal injury fields. She has years of experience coordinating and facilitating consultations and in her prior role, she was responsible for acting as the main point of contact and liaison between attorneys, clients and other office business partners. She is well versed in crisis management, conflict-resolutions and communicating with others cross racially and culturally despite language and other miscellaneous barriers. Selina comes from a Latin American background and immigrated to the U.S. as a child where she was able to gain first hand experience of the complex immigration system.
Alondra joined the KIND team in July 2022 where she supports the Legal Programs department. Alondra was born in Mexico and is a native Spanish speaker. She graduated from Seattle Pacific University with a bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice and a minor in sociology. Prior to joining KIND she worked with Pioneer Human Services as a Residential Youth Specialist supervising and supporting residents in a way that encouraged their social and emotional development. Alondra is passionate about helping youth and wants to continue being an advocate for social justice.
Alejandra joined KIND in July of 2021 as Paralegal for the detained team in KIND’s Seattle office. Alejandra was born and raised in North Idaho; her parents originally migrated from Mexico. She graduated from the University of Idaho with a degree in International Studies with an emphasis in Latin America. Alejandra graduated as a Martin Scholar for the 2020-2021 academic year. Alejandra previously worked in the immigration field working alongside attorneys to best support hard working immigrants. Alejandra is bilingual in Spanish and English
Alexandra joined KIND June of 2021 as a Paralegal for KIND’s Seattle office. She graduated from Western Washington University in Law, Diversity and Justice from Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies. Her studies emphasized Latin American Studies, Human Services and Policy. Alex graduated as the Outstanding Graduate in Law, Diversity and Justice for the 2020-2021 academic year. Her academic work has largely revolved around due process violations within the United States immigration system. Alex is bilingual in Spanish and English.
Jose Garcia joined KIND in December 2022 as a Paralegal for KIND’s Seattle office. Jose was born and raised in Washington. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington in 2019. Both of his parents are natives of Mexico, so immigration has been a passion of Jose’s since he was very young. Jose has previously worked as a legal assistant in a private Immigration law firm helping hard-working immigrants file for status and protection from deportation.
Rachel Ketola joined KIND as a Program Coordinator in May 2022. Previously, Rachel worked as a DOJ Accredited Representative at the Immigration Center for Women and Children in San Francisco. In this position, Rachel represented survivors of violent crime in their applications before USCIS and helped launch a helpdesk program to provide information and support to asylum seekers in removal proceedings. In 2017, Rachel graduated summa cum laude from the University of San Francisco with a bachelor’s degree in International Studies, focusing her culminating thesis on international asylum law. After graduating, she participated in a one-year volunteer program with the Universidad Centroamericana (UCA) in El Salvador. Outside of work, Rachel can be found recharging in nature or honing her pottery skills.
Regional Director, Social Services - West
Sierra Molton is KIND’s Regional Director, Social Services, West. Prior to joining KIND in January of 2022, Sierra spent 20 years serving unaccompanied refugee and immigrant minors as both a Social Worker and then Clinical Program Manager with Refugees NW Foster Care, a program of Lutheran Community Services. Sierra is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW). She received her Master’s degree in Social Work (MSW) from the University of Washington and her undergraduate degree from Pacific Lutheran University in Psychology and Spanish. Sierra began her career as a social worker in northern Chile, where she lived for 2 ½ years while volunteering in a group home through Jesuit Volunteers International. Sierra is honored to work for KIND and is committed to supporting the growth and success of the social services team to promote the rights and well-being of all unaccompanied children. Sierra currently resides in Seattle with her husband and twin daughters.
Social Services Supervisor, West
Kimberly Manson joined the KIND Seattle office as a Senior Social Services Coordinator in August of 2021. For seven years previously, Kimberly provided intensive, clinical case management to Unaccompanied Refugee Minors (URMs) in the Seattle area, helping to develop best practices with unaccompanied youth and the people who serve them. Kimberly holds a Master's in Social Work (MSW) from the University of Washington, and a Bachelor's Degree in International Studies & Spanish from Seattle University. As the grandchild of Portuguese immigrants, Kimberly is grateful to serve immigrant youth and their families. She is proud to work for KIND and promote justice for all migrant communities of the United States.
Senior Social Services Coordinator
Jenna joined the Seattle KIND office as a Senior Social Services Coordinator in 2020. Prior, Jenna worked as a Bilingual Community Advocate in King County, providing intensive case management to Spanish-speaking youth and young adult survivors of human trafficking. In 2014, Jenna graduated from Western Washington University with a Bachelor's Degree in Linguistic Sciences. She then moved to Colombia where she taught English to low-income young adults pursuing technical careers. In the Seattle area, Jenna has worked as an Instructor's Assistant in English language learner classrooms, and volunteered extensively in legal and citizenship clinics for immigrant communities.
Social Services Coordinator
Bio coming soon!
Social Services Coordinator
Bio coming soon!!!