With Proximity Comes Respect: Meet Maggi Knox, Immigration Project Volunteer

October 23, 2018

Maggi Knox- Immigration Project Volunteer

Photo Credit: Alan Winslow                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

 

“We can always rely on Maggi when there is an urgent task at hand,” says Liz Markuci, VOLS Immigration Project Director. Maggi is a deeply humble and giving individual who is always ready to take on a project. Maggi, a retired attorney and the former Director of Real Estate at Community Access, uses her time as a Retiree to volunteer helping high-schoolers write college essays, tutoring grade school students in reading, and accompanying immigrants to court as a witness and support system.  In addition to those activities, Maggi was excited to use her legal skills on behalf of the immigrant youth she heard so much about from her daughter, Molly Coe, a staff attorney with the VOLS Immigration Project. As a VOLS volunteer, Maggi has been most active in filling out DACA applications which is a relentless aspect of the Immigration Project’s work load. In filling out DACA applications, Maggi meets with young immigrants, gets to know them and asks about the intimate details of their lives: “You find out that they are supporting a child, or a parent might be in deportation, or… you might find out about their living situation; so it’s not just their immigration status.” Through this process, Maggi not only gets to know the clients she works with, but also finds herself leaving client meetings with a deep admiration for who they are: “That’s why I find the people I work with very impressive; because you realize everything they are going through: financially, emotionally, family wise.”

Maggi has learned first-hand that when working on complex legal issues, VOLS’ volunteers must hear and understand their clients’ stories in order to assure the best outcome. This proximity to and understanding of lives fosters an environment of mutual respect in the pursuit of justice. Beneath surface-level impressions reside a plethora of stories encompassing adversities and opportunities. When you hear about an individual’s unvarnished circumstances, you walk away with respect.  Proximity has fostered mutual respect between VOLS’ clients and Maggi, and VOLS is grateful for the passion, thoughtfulness and good legal skill she brings to her work with the VOLS Immigration Project.  Thank you, Maggi!