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This article was originally published on April 28, 2011.

The Washington, DC immigration law firm of Maggio & Kattar honored Tahirih Justice Center at its third Annual Founders’ Day benefit On Wednesday, March 16.

Inaugurated in 2009 in honor of the firm’s founders, Candace Kattar and the late Michael Maggio, the annual Founders’ Day is an opportunity for Maggio & Kattar to join friends, colleagues, and the immigration community in recognizing and supporting the work of an extraordinary local non-profit organization.

The evening was an uplifting celebration of Tahirih Justice Center’s efforts to provide justice to immigrant women and girls and the essential support that Maggio & Kattar has provided to Tahirih since its inception. Tahirih Director of Public Policy Jeanne Smoot spoke of the role Michael Maggio played in Tahirih’s creation, quoting Tahirih’s founder Layli Miller-Muro as saying of Michael, “‘For me, he is to credit with everything.’”

She added, “One of the reasons it’s so wonderful to be here with you tonight is that, I don’t think it’s any exaggeration to say that without Maggio & Kattar, and without specifically the late and great Michael Maggio, Tahirih might not even be here today, and certainly wouldn’t be where we are today. And so we are very grateful.”

Watch a full video of her speech here.

Another highlight of the evening was a live performance by organic electronica artist Yoko K. After speaking with Tahirih staff and clients, Yoko was inspired to create a unique piece of art, featuring voice samples of Tahirih staff and clients, as well as Yoko’s own voice and music on keyboard, flute, and saxophone. With a self description of “organic electronica”, the piece was both powerful and utterly one-of-a-kind. Watch Yoko’s performance here.

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