"80 Years of Welcome"
Krish O'Mara Vignarajah
Lutheran Immigrant and Refugee Services
October 5 & 6, 2019 at Mt. Olive, Santa Monica
At a time when too many refugees and asylum-seekers are unsure whether they will be welcome in America, I am committed to ensuring that all immigrants seeking a better life in America are afforded the same opportunities as my families received to pursue their dreams.
- Krish O'Mara Vignarajah

Since its founding in 1939, LIRS has worked to uphold the uniquely American ideal that welcoming immigrants from across the globe with open arms is essential to our nation’s progress and prosperity. Now more than ever, bold action is needed to ensure America remains the shining city on the Hill and a bastion of hope for those yearning for a better life.

A refugee herself, Krish represents the promise of the American Dream and understands better than anyone the importance of LIRS’s work. When she was 9-months-old, she and her family escaped a civil war and built a life in Maryland. Her parents became public school teachers in Baltimore City, and she has committed her career to public service because she knows how differently life could have turned out.

Most recently, Krish served as Policy Director for Michelle Obama and led the President’s and First Lady’s signature Let Girls Learn initiative. Before the White House, she served as Senior Advisor at the State Department under Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Secretary of State John Kerry, where she coordinated development and implementation of multiple programs including those concerning refugees and migration, engagement with religious communities, the legal dimensions of U.S. foreign policy, and regional issues relating to Africa and the Middle East.

Prior to working in government, Krish worked at McKinsey & Company, practiced law at Jenner & Block in Washington, D.C., clerked for Chief Judge Michael Boudin on the U.S. Court of Appeals, studied at Yale for college and law school and at Oxford University as a Marshall Scholar, and taught international law at Georgetown University as an adjunct professor.

Krish will share her story during worship on at Mt. Olive, Santa Monica - home of the Students4Students Bruin Shelter - on Saturday, October 5 at 5:00 p.m. and Sunday, October 6 at 9:00 a.m. She will then lead an adult forum on Sunday at 10:30am. You are invited to any and all of these events!

Co-sponsored by the SWCA Synod Justice Team

Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service is one of the largest immigration and refugee resettlement agencies in the United States, and only one of two agencies that helped reunite children with parents after family separations. LIRS is nationally recognized for its leadership working with and advocating for refugees, asylum seekers, unaccompanied children, immigrants in detention, families fractured by migration and other vulnerable populations. Through 80 years of service and advocacy, LIRS has helped over 500,000 migrants and refugees rebuild their lives in America.

Southwest California Synod of the ELCA| (818) 507-9591| news@socalsynod.org| www.socalsynod.org