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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.

May 27, 2020
WASHINGTON - In a letter sent today to the heads of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Human Rights First, together with the Center...
May 13, 2020
The Trump Administration is exploiting the coronavirus crisis to pursue its long-held goal of preventing refugees from seeking and receiving humanitarian protection in the United States. Under...
May 13, 2020
WASHINGTON - As the Acting Secretary for the Department Homeland Security (DHS) travels to points along the U.S. border with Mexico this week, the Trump administration continues using the coronavirus...
March 10, 2020
On March 6, 2020, as the Trump administration asked the U.S. Supreme Court to freeze a February 28 ruling halting its forced return of asylum seekers to Mexico, government officials announced the...