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Spotlight on Southwestern Illinois: Salute to Women in Law

Tiffany Baldwin, Owner, Compass Immigration Law, Fairview Heights

By KATE GENO
    Tiffany Baldwin has recently established her own firm, Compass Immigration Law, to guide foreign nationals and U.S. employers through the immigration law maze.
p13 baldwinBaldwin    Baldwin specializes in employment-related immigration law to help her clients hire foreign nationals and determine the appropriate work visa or green card process required for each employment situation. Her focus is on visas for professionals including physicians and other health-care workers, engineers, IT professionals and educators. She also works with seasonal workers’ visas.
    Although she is based in Fairview Heights, she processes cases for clients located all over the country. Two-thirds of her clients she never meets face to face. A phone, fax machine and FedEx enable her to meet her clients’ needs, no matter where they are located.
    By opening her own firm, Baldwin is able to apply principles to her work that she believes in. Lean Six Sigma Principles are popular in the manufacturing and engineering industries and are starting to take hold in the legal profession. The principles rely on efficient, cost-effective, high-quality processes. Her goal is to improve the process for her clients and produce a better quality of work with fewer errors.
    “Immigration petitions are process-driven so it is the perfect area to work on improving processes and becoming more efficient,” says Baldwin. “Many firms rely on billable hours and that system doesn’t encourage efficiency.”
    Baldwin was inspired to specialize in immigration law due to several influences. Her mother immigrated to the United States from Tehran after marrying her father who was stationed there in the Army. Baldwin grew up in the Armenian church in Swansea, surrounded by people who had immigrated to the United States. She was also inspired by an immigration law professor in college. She clerked at a firm in the immigration law department and that cemented her desire to pursue this career.
    Now, her clients inspire her: “When I get a notice that someone has received their green card or will take the oath to become a U.S. citizen, I am satisfied to know that they have achieved their dream and are starting a new life in this country,” says Baldwin. “I chose to name my firm Compass Immigration Law because the immigration process is a journey and I feel like the ‘Legal Sherpa’ who guides my clients every step of the way.”