ICDI Board of Directors

Leaders of all faiths came together with the shared belief that spiritual care and visitation were a human and religious right of immigrants in detention. This was the beginning of the ICDI. The bill HB4613 passed unanimously in the Illinois House and Senate on November 20, 2008, and became law in June 2009.

Suzanne Akhras

Suzanne Akhras serves as the President of ICDI. Suzanne joined the board of ICDI in 2018. Suzanne founded the Syrian Community Network in 2015 to bring awareness and support for Syrian refugees who were being resettled in the United States.

Patricia Motto
Vice President

Born and raised in Chicago, Pat Motto is another long time supporter of ICDI’s work even before ICDI was created. Pat now serves as the Vice President. Pat met ICDI founders, Sisters Pat and JoAnn, when the Sisters created Su Casa, an early housing project for immigrants.

Breeda McGrath

Breeda McGrath is a higher education leader and Associate Campus Dean for Online programs at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology where she supervises over 30 graduate programs including international psychology, organizational leadership, behavioral economics, behavior analysis, forensic psychology, counseling, and psychopharmacology.

Rodolfo Medina

Rodolfo serves as ICDI’s Treasurer. Even though Rodolfo Medina is from Little Village in Chicago, he spent much of his childhood in Mexico. He has a deep connection to his family in Mexico and looks forward to the times he visits them. Rodolfo has continuously supported the immigrant community in Chicago through organizations like ICDI.

Fred Tsao

Fred Tsao is the Senior Policy Counsel at the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR). As a child of immigrant parents, Fred always understood the complexity of American culture and how immigrants experience this country in different ways.

Peter Erickson

Peter Erickson, also known as Pete, has supported many organizations in Chicago addressing the inequity in education, criminal justice, housing, and healthcare. When Pete first learned about ICDI, he knew this was an organization to join.

Johannes Favi

Originally from Benin, Johannes Favi is a nationally recognized advocate for immigrant rights. When asked “Why do you believe in ICDI?” Johannes said “The work is critical and you would have to be in my seat to understand it.

Sarah Ankunda

Sarah is most excited about being able to help make immigrants feel welcomed and comfortable in the United States alongside an amazing team. She has a B.A. in Procurement and Supply Chain Management.

Picture of Laura Vilim

Laura vilim

Laura Vilim is a founding partner of Valdez & Vilim, LLP and of her prior firm, Valdez Vilim & Wunrow, LLP. She focuses her practice in the area of immigration and nationality law, including family-based immigration, humanitarian immigration (asylum, VAWA, U Visas, T Visas and SIJS), naturalization, immigration appeals, and removal defense.

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