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Baltimore Staff

Cathleen Carlson

Staff Attorney

Cathleen joined Tahirih in 2023. As a Staff Attorney, Cathleen is responsible for representing immigrants fleeing gender-based violence before Immigration Court and USCIS.

Before joining Tahirih, Cathleen served as an Immigration Attorney at private firms in Arlington, Virginia and Miami, Florida, where she provided representation for those seeking asylum relief and family based-petitions.

During law school, Cathleen was a student-attorney at the International Human Rights Law Clinic at American University Washington College of Law. She was also a member of the International Law Review.

“I am truly inspired by Tahirih’s mission to support immigrant women and girls become empowered and establish a safe and happy lives for themselves and their family’s here in the United States”

Education: American University, JD; James Madison University, BA

Hometown: Stafford, VA

Ashley DiIonno

Social Services Program Manager

Ashley DiIonno joined Tahirih in 2014. As Social Services Program Manager in Baltimore, she provides support for our clients with basic needs, including housing, counseling, and medical services. Ashley helps them connect to the services they need to be able to rebuild their lives and attain self-sufficiency. Prior to joining Tahirih, she was a Client Services Coordinator at House of Ruth working primarily with immigrant survivors of domestic violence. Before that, she was an assessment specialist and teacher in the Anne Arundel Community College EBS program. Ashley’s education included six months living and studying in Buenos Aires. She is a licensed graduate Social Worker and holds a masters in Social Work from the University of Maryland.

“I am inspired by Tahirih’s commitment to empowering immigrant women and girls and to fighting for the justice they deserve.”

Education: University of Maryland School of Social Work, MSW; Villanova University, BA

Languages: Spanish

Hometown: Annapolis, MD

Samantha Dockrey

Legal Advocate

Samantha joined Tahirih’s Baltimore office in 2022. As Legal Advocate, Samantha provides support to attorneys by preparing filings, meeting with clients, and maintaining client contact, among other tasks.

Prior to joining Tahirih, Samantha served as a Paralegal Specialist and Legal Administrative Assistant at the Esperanza Center Immigration Legal Services. Before entering the immigration legal field, she taught middle school Spanish for Baltimore County Public Schools. Samantha also lived and worked in Santiago, Chile, teaching English to native Spanish speakers for three years.

I am inspired by Tahirih’s dedicated staff who strive each day to provide compassionate, holistic services to strong women and girls fleeing violence and seeking to live in safety and with dignity.

Education: St. Mary’s College of Maryland, BA

Languages: Spanish, English

Hometown: Baltimore, MD

Daniella Prieshoff

Managing Attorney

As Managing Attorney, Daniella advocates alongside immigrant survivors of gender-based violence on their journeys to justice. She provides trauma-informed counsel and legal representation to survivors in defensive and affirmative asylum, VAWA petitions, T visa and U visa petitions, and Special Immigrant Juvenile Status before immigration courts, the Board of Immigration Appeals, and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Daniella also advocates for survivors in their protective order, divorce, and child custody petitions before Maryland state courts.

Prior to re-joining Tahirih in 2021, Daniella was a Senior Attorney at Kids in Need of Defense, where she supervised a team of attorneys and paralegal and advocated for unaccompanied immigrant children in their asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status petitions, and T visa and U visa petitions. Before her position at KIND, Daniella was a Senior Attorney at Tahirih Justice Center’s Baltimore office, where she advocated for immigrant survivors of gender-based violence in their immigration and domestic relations matters. Daniella was a Staff Attorney at Farmworker Legal Services of Michigan where she represented indigent immigrant farmworkers in immigration and employment cases, initiated a targeted advocacy project to expand the representation of workplace sexual assault survivors, and developed a community partners network sensitive to the needs of immigrant survivors of workplace sexual assault.

Daniella began her legal career as judicial law clerk to the Honorable Glenn T. Harrell on the Maryland Supreme Court. Currently, Daniella serves as a member of the Baltimore City Hispanic Commission, which serves as a liaison between Baltimore City government and Baltimore Hispanic community, which researches and monitors issues and policies affecting Baltimore’s Hispanic/Latino population, and recommends legislative and policy solutions to the Mayor, the City Council, City agencies and other organizations.

Daniella was born in Ecuador and has spent time abroad in Haiti, France, Spain, the United Kingdom, and Switzerland.

“The clients at Tahirih Justice Center are heroes. I am honored to work at an organization like Tahirih that is a pioneer in empowering survivors of gender-based violence to pave a path to safety and independence.”

Education: University of Baltimore School of Law, JD; University of Maryland, BA

Languages: Spanish, English

Hometown: Guayaquil, Ecuador

Feamma Stephens

Senior Social Services Advocate

Feamma Stephens joined Tahirih in 2021. As a Senior Social Services Advocate in the Baltimore office, Feamma is responsible for providing crisis intervention, safety planning, and advocacy services to Tahirih clients in order to ensure the highest level of support and case management as clients rebuild their lives and strive for self-sufficiency. Prior to joining Tahirih, Feamma served as an Outreach and Prevention Specialist with Amatus Health working to educate youth and adults on the intersectionality of intimate partner violence, substance use, and mental health disorders. Before that, she served as a Bilingual Domestic Violence Case Manager with Family and Children’s Services.

“I am inspired by Tahirih’s continued commitment to empower immigrant women and girls in their fight for justice, equity, and self-sufficiency.”

Education: Towson University, BS

Languages: Spanish

Hometown: Baltimore, Maryland

Yanitza Rivera

Staff Attorney

Yanitza joined Tahirih in 2022. As a Staff Attorney, Yanitza is responsible for representing individuals fleeing gender-based violence before the Immigration Court, USCIS and other agencies. Prior to joining Tahirih, Yanitza served as an Immigration Attorney for Catholic Charities of Baltimore, where she provided direct legal representation to individuals in removal proceedings, VAWA, U Visa and Adjustment of Status. She also assisted in mentoring Pro Bono Attorneys and conducted presentations on immigration benefits and relief.
During Law School, Yanitza was a member of the Honor Student Program and represented clients in family law matters such as custody, divorce, childhood support and, domestic violence.

I am inspired by Tahirih’s mission in serving women and girls in their fight against gender-based violence. Fighting for their rights means giving them a new beginning where dignity is a priority.

Education: Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico, JD; Inter American University of Puerto Rico, BA

Languages: Spanish

Hometown: San Juan, Puerto Rico