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Staff Bios

Danielle H. Gotcher

Managing Partner

Danielle represents companies large and small sponsoring employees for work authorization in the United States.  She heads the firm’s compliance practice, providing practical and strategic advice, training and guidance on avoiding civil and criminal penalties. Danielle also supervises a team of attorneys and paralegals filing hundreds of petitions each year before the immigration authorities. She has successfully pursued administrative appeals from cases improperly denied by the US Citizenship and Immigration Service as well as the Department of Labor, and she routinely advises clients throughout the United States on immigration strategy and compliance with US immigration laws. Before joining GIP, Danielle practiced for 10 years as a litigator, and she now brings her advocacy skills and hands-on court experience to her current practice. She also previously served in the White House Communications office.

Danielle graduated Magna Cum Laude from Boston University with two Bachelor’s degrees in Political Science and Communication, and she received her law degree from Southwestern University in Los Angeles.  She serves as a member of the Board for Women 2 Women Westlake Village, and has volunteered her time assisting the Southwestern Moot Court team.  She lives in Thousand Oaks, CA with her husband (and law partner Jim Gotcher), and their daughter.

James K. Gotcher

Senior Partner

James K. Gotcher has practiced law since 2006. A graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, he initially worked in the front office of the Oakland A’s baseball club. Subsequently, he graduated from Southwestern University School of Law. Since 2001, he has worked in various positions with the Gotcher Law Group where he learned the fundamentals of business immigration law. In the years since, he has developed highly advanced skills in the area of H1B non-immigrant visas for various professionals including engineers, doctors, nurses, professors and IT professionals. Mr. Gotcher specializes in third-party placement filings and strategizes with small and large companies that provide and/or utilize contractors and sub-contractors. He had written a regular column on this subject for the India Times, as well as articles for other industry publications.

James R. Gotcher

Senior Partner

James R. Gotcher has practiced law since 1976. An Air Force veteran and graduate of Loyola Law School (Los Angeles), he initially worked as a deputy district attorney for the County of Los Angeles. In 1978, he moved into private practice, emphasizing representation of business immigration clients. In 1988, his practice was acquired by Coudert Brothers (at that time the largest law firm in the world, with offices in 28 countries) and he became the head of the firm’s worldwide business immigration practice. In late 1993, he left Coudert Brothers and resumed his private practice in Los Angeles. His principal clients have included Japan Airlines, the California Institute of Technology, and Adaptec. He is a former Chairman of the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Immigration Law Section, and he has published a book, authored numerous articles as well as spoken widely on business immigration topics.

Momal S. Iqbal

Supervising Attorney

Momal was admitted to practice law in the state of California and has been practicing immigration law since 2008. She represents both corporate and individual clients in all family-based and employment-based immigration matters. Prior to joining GIP, Ms. Iqbal worked as an Assistant Chief Counsel for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and at a boutique business immigration firm. She is also a former criminal prosecutor, which has provided her with a deep understanding of the effects of criminal convictions on immigration benefits. Ms. Iqbal earned her Juris Doctorate degree from BYU J. Reuben Clark Law School, where she served as a senior editor for the International Law and Management Review. She received a Bachelor’s degree Cum Laude in Government from the University of Redlands. She has also had the privilege of serving the United States in the armed forces, and is the recipient of the Army Achievement Medal. As the child of immigrants, Ms. Iqbal understands the contributions immigrants make to the United States and the value immigrants bring to our communities and economy.

Richard A. Harding

Supervising Attorney

Richard specializes in business immigration matters including H-1B (including third party placement), L-1, and related student visa issues (F-1, OPT, STEM extensions). Previous business representations include a wide variety of industries including information technology staffing companies, engineering services firms, physical therapy clinics, and financial services firms. Previous individual representations include changes of status between H-4 and F-1 statuses, applications for EAD (OPT and H-4), and responding to a variety of RFEs related to status issues arising from CPT and OPT.

Richard received his Juris Doctor degree with a specialization in Business Law from UCLA School of Law in 2013 and was selected for the Order of the Coif. During law school, Richard was Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of International Law and Foreign Affairs and oversaw the publication of four issues. Richard is admitted to practice in all state and federal courts in California. Before attending law school, Richard earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in history from CSU, Northridge and completed his master’s thesis on advancements in medical science related to the bubonic plague pandemic (1894-1910).

Kevin M. Kurian

Attorney

Kevin has experience working on numerous immigrant worker petitions, requests for evidence in connection with immigrant worker petitions, TN visas, L-1A intracompany transferee manager or executive visas, adjustment of status cases, and requests for evidence in connection with nonimmigrant worker petitions. Prior to joining GIP, Kevin was a pro bono volunteer for the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, where he worked on multiple asylum, naturalization and adjustment of status cases. Prior to his pro bono volunteer work, Kevin worked for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Kevin earned his J.D. from Rutgers Law School in 2012 and his B.A. degree from the University of California, Berkeley in 2005. Kevin is admitted to practice law in Illinois, and immigration law in all states. Kevin’s practice is focused on immigration and nationality law.

Michelle A. Choe

Attorney

Michelle represents corporate and individual clients on various employment-based matters including Labor certification applications, I-140 immigrant preference petitions and nonimmigrant visa applications. Prior to joining Global Immigration Partners, she represented clients on a wide array of immigration matters, including family and employment-based immigration and nonimmigrant visa applications. She also has experience in family law, which has prepared her in dealing with the detrimental immigration consequences related to divorce and separation. Michelle grew up in Atlanta, Georgia and received her Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Georgia. She then went on to earn her Juris Doctorate degree from Mercer Law School in 2013.

Michelle currently focuses her practice on U.S. Immigration Nationality law. She is fluent in Korean.

Eren Yildirim

Attorney

Eren has earned degrees in Finance and Law, with honors, from the University of Georgia. He is licensed to practice law in Georgia and immigration law in all states and immigration courts. Eren has worked on all facets of immigration law, including family, business, and deportation cases. Prior to joining GIP, Eren worked at a boutique immigration firm and operated his own law practice. As an immigrant himself, Eren is able to closely understand the needs and goals of his clients.

Heidi Elliott

Office Manager

Heidi Elliott has been working in the Immigration field for over 28 years. She initially started in this field back in 1986 with Ron Gotcher, and worked for Ron for several years preparing employment-based applications before moving to a larger law firm where she worked for 20 years before returning to GIP. She has processed all types of immigrant and non-immigrant petitions and is experienced in all aspects of Immigration applications and procedures. She moved to Global Immigration Partners in February 2010 as the Lead NIV Paralegal, and as the firm grew, she was promoted to Office Manager/Senior Managing Paralegal of the firm, where she now oversees the training of all paralegals and staff.

Lupita S. Rynott

Sr. Managing Paralegal

Lupita S. Rynott joined Global Immigration Partners as a Sr. Paralegal in August of 2014. She has been working in the Immigration field for over 30 years. Lupita initially started in this field back in 1986, and has worked for several law firms on a variety of family and employment-based applications. She was promoted to Sr. Supervising Paralegal in the IV department with our firm in November 2015, where she applies her extensive knowledge and experience in this area to assist clients and the training of paralegals. Her number one commitment is to ensure that the clients are provided with the upmost professional service and to make the process go as smoothly as possible.