Children’s Project Associate Lissette Zavala protects the rights of immigrant children in Tennessee who are temporarily in federal custody. She is an Accredited Representative, authorized by the Department of Justice to represent immigrants in matters before the Department of Homeland Security. Lissette is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University (BA, Political Science Pre-law & International Relations). Prior to joining MIA, her 15 years of experience as a paralegal included employment-based and family-based immigration as well as cases involving unaccompanied children, survivors of violence, and people in removal or deportation proceedings.Lissette believes in empowering immigrants and refugees by educating them and defending their rights. She joined MIA because she “wants to help protect children and survivors of violent crimes.” She is a world traveler and enjoys learning about and experiencing other cultures.