Who We Are

The Honorable Elizabeth A. Hacker (retired)

Judge Hacker was appointed as a United States Immigration Judge in July 1995 to re-establish an Immigration Court in Michigan, which was expanded under her tenure to include jurisdiction over immigration proceedings in Ohio and northern Kentucky. She has held numerous positions within the former Immigration & Naturalization Service (INS) including naturalization attorney, trial attorney, and chief attorney for three immigration districts, including Los Angeles. She was selected for special assignment to the United States Department of Justice Civil Division’s Immigration Appellate Section for a one year appointment.

During this time, she handled numerous cases in the United States Courts of Appeal for the Third, Fourth, and Ninth Circuits. In addition, she assisted on several class actions involving detention of Cuban nationals, issues of pursuit, and other law enforcement activities. She also served as assistant regional counsel for the western region of the INS. While affiliated with the INS, she acted as an instructor at both of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Academies. She taught subjects including the law of arrest, search and seizure, employer sanctions, and general immigration law. She was a member of the Employer Sanctions Legal Advisory Group with the INS. As an attorney, she has had broad experience in litigation in the federal sector as well as in the immigration court arena. She is a graduate of Wayne State University and Detroit College of Law.

The Honorable Mahlon F. Hanson (retired)

Judge Hanson was appointed as a United States Immigration Judge at the Miami Immigration Court in March 1995 and served in that capacity until July 2010. From May 1987 to June 1994, he served as Deputy Regional Counsel in St. Paul, Minnesota and then Deputy District Counsel in Miami, Florida from June 1994 to March 1995. From August 1983 to July 1986, he served as a judge with the Minnesota Workers Compensation Court of Appeals, and from July 1986 to May 1987 he served as Chief Judge.

From January 1982 to August 1983, he served as the Minnesota Assistant Commissioner for Workers Compensation, and from April 1980 to January 1982, he worked as a workers compensation trial judge. From August 1976 to April 1980, he worked as a staff attorney for the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry. Judge Hanson also served as a Staff Judge Advocate Officer in the United States Army while on active duty from January 1970 to November 1974. From November 1974 to June 1994, he acted as a Staff Judge Advocate Officer while in the United States Army Reserves at the 88th United States Army Reserve Command in Fort Snelling, Minnesota. Judge Hanson received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1966 from the University of Minnesota and then his Juris Doctorate from University of Minnesota Law School in 1969.

Jeffrey R. Parkin, Esq.

Mr. Parkin is Secretary of IRLI’s Board. He recently retired from United Airlines after a 28 year career. With over 20,000 hours flying time, he now flies a corporate jet for a private company. From 1995 to 2007, he served as Vice President of Thermion Systems International which designed and manufactured electro-thermal surface heating systems and industrial heaters for the aerospace industry.

His responsibilities included managing the United States operations of the company, directing the engineering and manufacturing functions, and serving as in-house counsel for corporate matters. Mr. Parkin received his Juris Doctorate degree from Western New England College School of Law, Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Cornell University.

John J. Rooney

Mr. Rooney brings more than 35 years of investigative experience involving employee misconduct, fraud, and aviation and border security investigations to the IRLI Board. Most recently he served as IRLI’s Director of Investigations where he used the federal Freedom of Information Act and state public records laws to monitor federal agencies, state and local governments, and every aspect of law enforcement to ensure compliance with our immigration laws and to educate Americans on the harm created by uncontrolled immigration on our environment, workforce, economy, health care, national security, and education. Prior to joining IRLI, he was the Director for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Fraud and Internal Investigations Division and was responsible for overseeing misconduct investigations and waste, fraud, and abuse involving FEMA’s disaster assistance programs in coordination with the DHS Office of Inspector General.

Prior to FEMA, Mr. Rooney served as Director of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Operational Field Testing Program and Management Inspections. He developed CBP’s first-ever “Red Teaming” program using the latest terrorist techniques in smuggling simulated weapons of mass destruction through CBP’s multilayered security systems at airports, seaports, and land-border crossings as well as directing inspections and audits of CBP and Border Patrol programs and operations. He also served as the Division Director of Program Reviews and Special Operations with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and was responsible for conducting program reviews, inspections, audits of TSA’s financial expenditures, internal investigations, and for developing a Red Teaming Program to identify weaknesses and vulnerabilities with TSA’s security screening systems in detecting and preventing weapons from entering commercial aircraft and in the aviation operations areas.

Mr. Rooney served in leadership roles with other federal agencies such as: Program Manager for the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Criminal Investigation; Assistant to the U.S. Postal Service Inspector General and Assistant to the Inspector General for Investigations; and Assistant Special Agent in Charge of Investigations for the U.S. Secret Service and the Agency for International Development, Office of Inspector General. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from The American University, Washington, D.C.

Daniel A. Stein, Esq.

Mr. Stein is the President of the Washington-based national immigration reform organization the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). He is an attorney who has worked for over 30 years in the field of immigration law and reform. Mr. Stein has been in his present position since January 1988. Prior to leading FAIR, Mr. Stein was the Executive Director of IRLI.

Mr. Stein has also been in private law practice in real estate, federal agency litigation, criminal law and tax-exempt corporate law. A native of Washington, D.C., Mr. Stein’s interest in immigration began as a professional staff member of the U. S. House of Representatives’ Select Committee on Narcotics Abuse and Control (from 1977 –1981), where he studied United States/Mexico border issues and international crop substitution efforts. Mr. Stein is the author of many articles on immigration published in scholarly journals as well as the popular press. Representing FAIR, Mr. Stein is routinely invited to appear on radio and television as “America’s best known immigration reformer,” noted Detroit’s leading talk show host David Newman. Mr. Stein has published hundreds of articles on immigration policy, and has appeared on national television literally a thousand times on just about every significant news program in America, including 60 minutes, 20/20, Nightline, The Today Show, Good Morning America, Fox News Live, Hannity and Colmes, Face the Nation, This Week, Crossfire, Dateline, The McLaughlin Group, The Brokaw Report, This Week and the Jim Lehrer News Hour, to name a few. Mr. Stein has spoken to major groups across America, and has been asked to testify before Congress on related issues over 50 times. Mr. Stein is a graduate of Indiana University and the Catholic University School of Law.

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