As we continue to celebrate our 75th anniversary year, and look forward to #AILAAC22 in June, we asked members to share their favorite memories from Annual Conferences in the past. Here are three memorable moments:
– Paul Parsons, AILA TX Chapter
“It was June 2007, and the conference was at the Marriott World Center in Orlando. I was standing in the lobby about half-way between the bar and the gift shop when the entire hotel erupted with news that the July 2007 Visa Bulletin had been released, and all employment-based categories were current. This was the moment the Blizzard of 2007 began, and we all began to contact clients and begin plans to prepare and file thousands of applications to adjust status. USCIS and the State Department tried to walk back the Visa Bulletin, but AILA and the American Immigration Council prepared a lawsuit and threated to file. We reached a settlement with USCIS and they announced on July 17 that applications to adjust status would be accepted through August 17, 2007 based upon the July Visa Bulletin. Collectively, AILA members filed approximately 325,000 applications in that 30-day period and then I think most immigration lawyers and paralegals took a vacation between August 18 and Labor Day in 2007. Many of those applications were pending for as much as 10 years, with a few extending even longer. It was the beginning of the long pending adjustment application, a phenomenon that unfortunately has become part of our everyday life.” – Rob Cohen, AILA Ohio Chapter
“It has to be the 1996 AILA Annual Conference in Phoenix, AILA’s 50th Anniversary. The first day luncheon took place outdoors under a huge tent and the air conditioner malfunctioned. While founding members of the organization gave speeches on the organization’s beginnings, we watched the butter patties on the table liquify. A close second was 1994 in San Francisco where the New York and Houston Chapter members sat at the hotel bar hoping to watch Game 5 of the NBA finals, but wound up viewing the OJ Simpson slow speed chase.” – Richard Solomon, AILA NYC Chapter
If you’d like to share your favorite AC memory with us, we’d love to see it! For details on how to submit a memory either in written or video form, please check out the announcement page on AILA.org.