About Us

Our Office

CLIA Staff

Our Story

Our mission: To help immigrants and refugees achieve their American dream by providing quality and affordable legal services.

CLIA is a 501 (C) 3 certified nonprofit based in Lincoln, Nebraska and is accredited through the Department of Justice to practice immigration law. We have an experienced staff of attorneys and DOJ accredited representatives available to help.

Founded in 2001 by current Executive Director Max Graves. CLIA met a demand for low-cost immigration assistance west of Omaha. CLIA successfully filed the first approved U-Visa application in the state of Nebraska.

Our Impact

  • Only nonprofit office in Lincoln Nebraska to provide the full array of direct legal services 
  • 900 Clients served in 2019
  • 10,000 Clients served since our nonprofit was founded
  • 400 U-Visas filed providing relief for domestic violence survivors 
  • CLIA paved the way by being was the first nonprofit in Nebraska to receive a U-Visa approval for immigrant victims of domestic violence
  • On average we provide the same service as a private attorney for up to 80% less

Why we are different

Our Approach

At CLIA, we specialize in bringing the law to your corner. We are dedicated to understanding what results you want and to helping you understand what actions we can take on your behalf. We will work with you every step of the way to make sure that you understand the choices you are making and feel empowered to make them.

A Team in Your Corner

Every week, our legal team has a meeting to discuss cases. This means that the expertise of the whole team weighs in on your case.

Legacy of Success

CLIA has been working in the community since 2001 years and has a proven track record of success. We use that experience to help you achieve success. 


Deeply Commited

Highly Skilled

Our Staff

Max Graves, Executive Director

CLIA founder and a fully accredited Department of Justice Accredited Representative. Mr. Graves graduated with a Masters in Biblical languages.

Mary Choate, Attorney

Mrs. Choate is licensed to practice law in Nebraska and holds a J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law. Mrs. Choate received B.S. in Political Science from Middle Tennessee State University.

Meghan Sonenberg, Attorney

Ms. Sonenberg is licensed to practice law in Nebraska with a J.D. from the University of Nebraska College of Law. Ms. Sonenberg received her B.A. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and her.

Jonathan Rubio, DOJ Rep

Mr. Rubio is a Bi-lingual DOJ Accredited Representative and graduated from UNL, with a B.A. in Political Science and Psychology. Mr. Rubio is also a Notary Public.

Angela Choe, DOJ Rep

Ms. Choe is a DOJ Accredited  Legal Representative and holds a J.D from the University College of Law. 

Alicia Ramos Gordin, DOJ Rep

Ms. Gordin Ramos is a is bi-lingual, and is a DOJ Accredited Representative, and graduated from Doane University with a B.A. in Human Relations, . 

Francisca Peterson, LMHP, MN

Ms. Peterson is a native Spanish speaker who has a Masters degree. She has served both as a school psychologist and as a main support staff member for CLIA since 2013.

Our Board of Directors

Jane Langan Mach, J.D., Board President, Remboldt Ludtke LLP, University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Law

Thomas Lintel, Treasurer, President of Lintel Financial Services, Inc.
Laurie Lage, J.D., Fundraising Committee Member, Legal Counsel, Nebraska State Legislature
Kathleen Maynard, Volunteer Committee Chair, Refugee Resettlement Coordinator, First-Plymouth Congregational Church
David Boeckner, Grants and Operations Committee Chair, Woods Brother Realty and Retired US Navy Commander
Matthew Mullen, PhD., Grants and Operations Committee, Founder, Article 30 Inc.
Rosanne Liesveld, CLIA Board Member

David Kaseman, Woods Bros Realty, CLIA Board Member

© Copyright 2020. Center for Legal Immigration Assistance