Abby Sullivan Engen
Immigration Supervising Attorney
Abby’s work at Centro consists primarily of representing children and families seeking asylum and other humanitarian relief before the Immigration Courts and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. She also is involved in various federal litigation efforts around immigrants’ rights issues. Prior to joining Centro, Abby worked at a small immigration law firm on a wide range of removal defense and family-based cases, as well as appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals and Ninth Circuit and litigation in federal district court against the Department of Homeland Security.
Before entering the field of immigration law, Abby authored a manual for the New Mexico Public Defender’s Office advising criminal defense counsel on how to best avoid harsh immigration consequences for their noncitizen clients. She also worked in the consumer protection division of the New Mexico Attorney General’s office, where she investigated and litigated against businesses that committed fraud against immigrants and other vulnerable populations. After graduating from U.C. Hastings in 2009 with a concentration in Public Interest Law, Abby clerked for U.S. District Judge Martha Vazquez of the District of New Mexico.
Although Abby spent the first few years of her law practice in areas other than immigration law, she has always been passionate about immigrants’ rights issues. In law school, she authored a law review article that criticized racial profiling and argued in favor of a more humane approach to immigration law enforcement. She also served as a volunteer interpreter for the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights’ asylum project, where she now volunteers as a mentor attorney for pro bono attorneys handling asylum cases.