The Berkshire Immigrant Center employs bilingual staff members (Spanish, Russian) who are culturally sensitive and thoroughly understand the needs and challenges faced by the immigrant and refugee community.
The Director, Hilary Greene, holds a Bachelors degree in Soviet and Russian Studies and is a fluent Russian speaker. Hilary spent several years working in public relations in St. Petersburg, Russia and then worked as Program Manager of The National Young Composers Competition at Williams College prior to joining the staff of the Jewish Federation in 1999.
The Program Coordinator, Brooke Mead, was formerly a high school Spanish teacher and holds her Masters degree in Spanish from Middlebury College. She has lived in Venezuela and Mexico and, having been an immigrant herself, brings with her the cultural understanding and sensitivity necessary to work with the immigrant and refugee population.
Bilingual Case Worker, Maria “Elisa” Fuller, Martinez grew up in Ecuador and graduated from Universidad de Cuenca/Cedei with a BA in International Sales & Marketing in 2001. Elisa began volunteering at BIC in June of 2013 and formally joined us as our newest case worker in September of 2014. On February 6th of 2016 Elisa was granted Partial Accreditation to the Board of Immigration Appeals. In addition to her experience in the business world, Elisa has also worked extensively with victims of domestic violence and children with mental and physical disabilities. As a bilingual woman born in a foreign country she brings with her a depth of understanding valued by our clients.
Office Manager, Rosalia Padilla, originally from Puerto Rico moved to Boston in the late 1980s. Having spent her senior year in high school living in Belgium, Rosalia is trilingual, compassionate, welcoming to people from all backgrounds, and sensitive to cultural differences. She holds a BA from Goddard College and has worked as a professional medical interpreter and also installs and maintains perennial, annual, and native gardens in southern Berkshire County. She has been a wonderful addition since November 2014.
Education Coordinator, Jennifer Smith, holds a BA in English from the University of New Hampshire. She worked for many years as the Program Coordinator, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) teacher, and Student Advocate for Jackson Mann Community Center and Veronica Smith Senior Center in Brighton, MA prior to joining the BIC staff.
Michele Sisselman, licensed immigration attorney with extensive experience, provides pro-bono consultations and advice on behalf of the Center’s clients and staff.