St. Francis School of Law hosted its most recent Career Insights seminar in April with attorney Helen Sklar, from Stone Grzegorek & Gonzales in Los Angeles. The firm is a boutique U.S. immigration law firm with more Certified Specialists in Immigration and Nationality law than any other California law firm.
Helen shared her practice experience in the area of immigration, starting with a stint in the non-profit world, followed by 20 years as a sole practitioner in Los Angeles, before joining her current law firm.
Originally from Madison Wisconsin, Helen attended Golden Gate University School of Law in San Francisco. Helen described how she assisted with the formation of one of the country’s first shelters for battered women. She also developed her interest in immigration law while a law student. She spoke to the changes over the years of her practice in the area of immigration law, and her fascination with it.
Helen represents noncitizens seeking visas, and asylum seekers, as well as other immigration related matters. Also described the process of qualifying as a specialist in immigration law, through five years of practice, passage of an exam, and experience in all aspects of immigration law.
Helen shared her experience with the incubator project, through which a new lawyer was able to assist Helen with an important immigration matter for a client. California Supreme Court Justice Goodwin Liu encouraged development of incubator programs. The programs state-wide provide lawyers with practical experience, networking, and render important services to clients.
Helen shared her perspective and philosophy that a good lawyer knows the law, cares about clients, works hard, and is honest. This combination, she said, brings success.