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Kennji Kizuka

Senior Researcher and Policy Analyst, Refugee Protection

As Senior Researcher and Policy Analyst for Refugee Protection, Kennji supports Human Rights First’s efforts to promote the protection of refugees, reform U.S. asylum law, policies and practices, address deficiencies in the U.S. resettlement system, and bring other U.S. immigration policies and practices into line with international refugee protection and human rights law standards. Prior to his role as Senior Researcher and Policy Analyst, Kennji served as an Immigrant Justice Corps Justice Fellow on Human Rights First’s Refugee Representation team.

Prior to joining Human Rights First, Kennji clerked for the Honorable Rosemary S. Pooler on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. During law school, he interned for the Norwegian Refugee Committee’s Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Malaysia, and the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project. Kennji has directly represented clients through the Capital Area Immigrant Rights Coalition and the California Asylum Representation Clinic at UC Berkeley School of Law. Before law school, Kennji worked for Human Rights Watch in their Children’s Rights Division.

Kennji received a juris doctor degree, Order of the Coif, from the UC Berkeley School of Law. He holds a master’s degree in public affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.

January 23, 2019
The Trump-McConnell bill—the "End the Shutdown and Secure the Border Act"—is nothing more than a hateful anti-immigration wish list, designed to hold the nation hostage in exchange for extremely...
December 20, 2018
New York City—In response to the Trump Administration’s announcement that refugees seeking asylum at the southern border will be required to wait in Mexico, Human Rights First’s Kennji Kizuka, who...
December 20, 2018
Following the tragic death of seven-year-old Jakelin Amei Rosmery Caal Maquin, which drew widespread attention to dangerous conditions in Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facilities, the...
December 11, 2018
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recently reported that the southern border saw a “dramatic increase” in credible fear claims from asylum seekers in fiscal year 2018. But data from the Department...