Board Co-Chair Sarah Hawk is a crucial member of the GAIN family. She has worked with us for over seven years in several capacities, gracefully guiding the organization as a board member and improving the lives of many of our clients as a volunteer attorney.
In an effort to celebrate Sarah’s service and support, we would like to give you all the opportunity to get to know her better.
Sarah Hawk is a shareholder at Ogletree Deakins, practicing in the Atlanta and Raleigh offices of the firm. She provides immigration counsel to numerous corporate clients and is a frequent speaker nationally and regionally on business immigration issues. Sarah has been recognized as a Who’s Who in Asian-American Communities and was named to Who’s Who Legal 2010 for her work as an immigration attorney. She is listed in Georgia Super Lawyers – Rising Stars 2010 and she has been listed in Chambers USA, America’s Leading Business Lawyers since 2009 and Who’s Who Legal Corporate Immigration in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
Sarah enjoys family time with her husband Shawn Gross, a Director at an Atlanta law firm, and daughter Zoe. Sarah is training to run her 10th (and final) marathon in New York this November.
How did you get involved with GAIN?
I learned about GAIN and met Cheryl Naja, a current GAIN Advisory Board member and longtime GAIN supporter, when I worked at Alston & Bird. I also met Monica Khant, GAIN’s Executive Director, through our American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) chapter and the local immigration community. Both of these women drew me to GAIN, and I have loved working with them and the GAIN Board for over seven years.
The opportunity to work with GAIN came as a true blessing; my corporate immigration day job has allowed me to contribute my time and energy outside of work to helping the most vulnerable victims of violence and human trafficking obtain immigration relief, all with the support of a fantastic nonprofit organization.
Why is GAIN important to you?
Many aspiring attorneys go to law school with hopes that they can change the world. GAIN is actually doing that by helping hundreds of immigrants each year who are victims of trafficking and violence. These individuals desperately need pro bono legal assistance, and GAIN is able to provide it.
On a personal note, I was born in the Philippines, which currently is one of the largest source countries for trafficking of young children.
What is your favorite memory associated with GAIN?
I was the Chair for our first Gala two years ago at The Ritz-Carlton, Atlanta, which required a huge leap of faith and work. After two “snow/ice” delays, finally seeing the ballroom filled with two hundred attendees and supporters of GAIN was an amazing moment.
What would you like to see in GAIN’s future?
GAIN has been one of Atlanta’s best-kept secrets for pro bono immigration legal work, and it has grown incredibly in the past few years.
My hope is that GAIN will continue to grow within the legal and corporate communities, and be at the center of pro bono immigration work. I also hope to see GAIN act as a facilitator to coordinate work with university immigration law clinics and other related legal groups in Atlanta and the Southeast.
Atlanta is a large metropolitan areas with a huge need for immigration pro bono assistance, especially for victims of human trafficking. GAIN’s network of corporate sponsors and supporters is critical to our stability and success. We hope anyone who has an interest in volunteering or supporting us will reach out to us at our website.