Welcome to the Garfinkel Immigration attorney spotlight series, where we will conduct a bimonthly Q&A with one of the Firm’s lawyers. In this edition, we spoke with Associate Attorney Brian Daza.
Brian Daza attended the Wake Forest University School of Law, where he graduated with a J.D. in 2022. He previously worked as an immigration paralegal and completed multiple internships in the field before joining Garfinkel Immigration Law Firm.
What drew you to the immigration law field?
My interest in immigration first started because of my dad and grandparents’ experiences as first-generation immigrants from Colombia. I also grew up in the Washington, D.C. area, where many of my friends were the children of diplomats and came from many different countries.
I spent a bit of time volunteering with a nonprofit that helped refugees when I was in college, and after that I was hooked.
What have you found most rewarding about working in immigration law?
By far the most rewarding part of working in immigration law is knowing that your efforts make a tangible difference in people’s lives. Every case is a person or a family seeking opportunity in the United States, and it is incredibly rewarding to have a face, a name and a personality that you can connect to case successes.
What do you see as the most substantial challenges ahead in the complicated and ever-evolving environment around immigration law issues?
Messaging is probably the biggest challenge. I think that most people who have been affected by the immigration system or have loved ones that are immigrants recognize how much immigration adds to our communities culturally and socially.
However, the average person is unaware of how complicated the system currently is, the limitations currently in place for both skilled and blue-collar workers, and how few substantial changes have taken place since the 1990s.
I think this lack of understanding leads to prioritizing immigration enforcement rather than finding common-sense solutions. Messaging and perception affect how people vote and how our elected officials prioritize.
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not working?
I am a huge extrovert, so I am often with friends exploring Charlotte, trying new restaurants and breweries, or watching football or basketball games when they are in season.
What is your favorite movie or TV show? Why?
I prefer TV that makes me laugh. My favorite TV show of all time is Scrubs because both my parents are in medicine, and I love the balance of silly humor and dramatic moments. For some of the same reasons, my favorite show on TV right now is Succession because of the balance of comedy and character moments.
What is one thing most people don’t know about you?
I have been to a red-carpet movie premiere in Hollywood! The director and starring actors presented the film and had a Q&A after, it was a surreal experience. Unfortunately, the movie wasn’t very good but I still had a lot of fun.