GLADIS MOLINA Gladis is a native of El Salvador and was brought to the U.S. in 1990, at age 10. She was granted Lawful Permanent Status in 2001. The experience of being an undocumented immigrant child and young adult inspired Gladis to become an immigration attorney and advocate on behalf of immigrant children.
Gladis received her B.A. from California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) in 2002 and her J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in 2006. Before attending law school, Gladis was a Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI) Public Policy Fellow at the U.S. Capitol in the office of then-Representative Xavier Becerra.
Gladis first began working with immigrant children in 2005 as a law clerk for Catholic Charities in Los Angeles. After law school, she continued working with immigrant children as a staff attorney for the South Texas Pro Bono Asylum Representation Project (ProBAR) in the Rio Grande Valley. In 2008, she joined Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) in Los Angeles as a pro bono coordinator. In 2011, Gladis moved to Phoenix to serve as a managing attorney for the Florence Immigrant & Refugee Rights Project (FIRRP), again focusing on children’s cases. As an attorney, she has represented children in Immigration Court and Juvenile Court, as well as before the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).
In 2016, Gladis joined the Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights. At the Young Center, Gladis leads the Child Advocate Program and its work on the consideration of the best interest standard for immigrant children facing removal proceedings in the United States. She works alongside a team of attorneys and social workers.Gladis, and her partner, Chris, live in Phoenix, where they are raising two boys.