TIFTON – Amna Shirazi is a lawyer who practices in immigration court and plans to open up an office in Tifton at the beginning of March.
She said she wants to help an under-served population.
For 20 years, Shirazi has dedicated her career to focusing on immigration cases and specifically family-based immigration cases, she said.
For the last five years Shirazi has wanted to bring her practice from Atlanta to South Georgia. COVID-19 was a factor in her move here.
Because of the pandemic, she said immigration courts and services finally began letting attorneys eFile like other courts have been doing for the last 15 years.
"I was taken by this review that I read by an immigration attorney down there (Tifton) and the person wrote, 'I hire a five-star attorney and what I got was nothing good,'" Shirazi said. "I thought, 'Why can't I bring the five-star attorney to Tifton.'"
Shirazi said she attended the Georgia Leadership Program, where she met Tifton City Councilman M. Jay Hall. She said Hall inspired her to choose Tifton where she will be able to serve a larger region.
"I understand you cannot do business in rural Georgia without having the proper network and I think Georgia Leadership Program has given me that, Shirazi said. "We are launching this with community and regional support."
The website for Leadership Georgia said the program stands apart as one of the nation’s oldest and most successful leadership-training programs for young business, civic and community leaders with the desire and potential to work together for a better Georgia. Its primary purpose is to identify, train and inspire a network of emerging young leaders, whose ages typically range from 25 to 45 years old.
Shirazi said immigrants almost always have only one time to get it right in immigration courts and she encourages anyone facing immigration court to talk with at least three attorneys before settling with the first one they call.
More information about Shirazi Immigration Law will follow after March 4 when the office holds a ribbon-cutting ceremony hosted by the Tifton-Tift County Chamber of Commerce.