American Immigration Council Announces Honorees for 2023 Immigration Impact Awards

June 20, 2023
Last modified: 
June 20, 2023

WASHINGTON—The American Immigration Council will honor two law firm partners and a Hispanic cultural organization with its Immigration Impact Award for their commitment to advancing the rights of migrants and bringing communities together on June 23 at the Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention in Florida.

The award—formerly known as the American Heritage Award—which recognizes the talents, contributions, and accomplishments of immigrants and their advocates, will be presented during a celebration that highlights notable immigrants, national heroes, and unsung heroes like immigration lawyers.

“Mayer Brown Partner Ori Lev and Vinson & Elkins Partner Stephen Medlock have been exceptional partners in the pursuit of justice and in defending the rights of asylum seekers in the Al Otro Lado v. Mayorkas case. Through their unwavering commitment and legal expertise, they have ensured that those fleeing persecution have a chance to bring their claims for asylum in the United States. Similarly, we are thrilled to commemorate Ballet Hispánico for their unwavering commitment to connecting communities through dance and creating a welcoming space where everyone can belong. Through their remarkable artistry, distinguished training program, and deep-rooted community engagement, Ballet Hispánico serves as a catalyst for social change, amplifying the voices of the omitted, overlooked, and othered,” said Jeremy Robbins, executive director of the American Immigration Council. “Together, Mayer Brown Partner Ori Lev, Vinson & Elkins Partner Stephen Medlock, and Ballet Hispánico exemplify the power of advocacy, culture, and art to foster inclusivity, amplify voices, and create a more just society. We are profoundly grateful for their work.”

The honorees of the American Immigration Council’s 2023 Immigration Impact Award are:

  • Mayer Brown Partner Ori Lev: is a member of Mayer Brown’s Financial Services Regulatory & Enforcement practice group. He concentrates his practice on representing financial institutions and other companies in government enforcement matters, internal investigations, and litigation, and providing regulatory advice and counsel on federal consumer financial and economic sanctions law. Lev is also the Chair of Mayer Brown’s Washington, D.C. Pro Bono Committee and a member of the firm’s U.S. Pro Bono Committee. Prior to entering private practice, Lev spent nearly 20 years working for the federal government, including roles at the Department of Justice, Department of the Treasury and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Lev is a graduate of the University of Michigan and Yale Law School.
  • Vinson & Elkins Partner Stephen Medlock: is an experienced antitrust litigator of Fortune 500 companies. He helps clients navigate through complex multidistrict class actions and successfully defends clients in grand jury investigations. His experience in antitrust matters include corporate counseling, internal investigations, civil non-merger and criminal cartel investigations, and litigation. Medlock has secured victories for clients in major antitrust class actions and B2B antitrust cases alleging monopolization and attempted monopolization. In addition to his significant pro bono practice, Medlock currently serves as a vice chair on the Exemptions and Immunities Committee of the American Bar Association’s Section of Antitrust Law. He is also the co-editor of the third edition of ABA’s Noerr-Pennington Handbook. Behind the scenes, Medlock is a trusted antitrust advisor and advocate in antitrust compliance matters, with a particular focus on clients in the food, beverage, consumer packaged goods, automotive, and high technology industries. Medlock is a graduate of Georgetown University and American University Washington College of Law.
  • Ballet Hispánico: is the largest Latinx/Latine/Hispanic cultural organization in the United States that brings communities together to celebrate the multifaceted Hispanic diasporas and the diversity of Hispanic cultures through dance. Ballet Hispánico was founded in 1970—at the height of the post-war civil rights movements by dance visionary and National Medal of Arts recipient Tina Ramirez. From its inception, Ballet Hispánico focused on providing a haven for black and brown families seeking place and artistic sanctuary. Under the direction of CEO Eduardo Vilaro, Ballet Hispánico is expanding, deepening the legacy of visibilizing Latine cultures, and exposing the intersectionality and depth of diversity found in the Hispanic cultures. Vilaro’s vision has elevated a community from the margins to its place ingrained at the center of the American cultural landscape.

In years past, the American Immigration Council has recognized the achievements of other outstanding immigrants and their advocates, including Carlos Santana, General Colin Powell, Sonia Nazario, Edwidge Danticat, Gerda Weissmann Klein, the law firm Arnold & Porter, and others.



For more information, contact:

If you would like to attend in person or cover this event in person, please contact Brianna Dimas at the American Immigration Council at 210-639-5587 (cell) or [email protected]. Video clips are also readily available for your use.

Media Contact

Elyssa Pachico
[email protected]

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