Elizabeth Ricci nationally known Immigration Attorney
By Dorothy Inman-Johnson
Special to the Outlook
Elizabeth Ricci was born in Brooklyn, New York, of Italian descent. She has been married for 15 years to Neil Rambana, a Tallahassee attorney, who is originally from Jamaica. They have two daughters, and are partners in their nationwide, full service, multi-lingual immigration law practice, Rambana & Ricci, located in Tallahassee. It is astounding, however, that Elizabeth’s outstanding work as an immigration attorney is recognized nationally and internationally, but she is relatively unknown in Tallahassee, the place she and her family call home.
Joy Reid, host of the AM Joy MSNBC Show, calls on Elizabeth as her show’s guest “immigration law expert”. The Philadelphia Inquirer calls her “the go-to lawyer for veterans”. She has been interviewed on CNN, CBS, FOX, Univision and Al Jazeera, quoted in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and published in the Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court, Federal Lawyer Magazine, and several multilingual magazines. She is a highly respected advocate for Comprehensive Immigration Reform. It is past time for Tallahassee to know of the great work Elizabeth is doing.
While in college, she received an unexpected scholarship that led her to devote her life to improving the lives of others. She majored in International Business, and became a small business development volunteer in Guatemala. She is now a successful business woman, community advocate, and is proud of the work she does keeping families together and American-owned businesses in operation. She speaks for those who find it difficult to speak for themselves, particularly foreign born veterans, widows, and abused children. For the last 16 years, she has practiced immigration law exclusively. Because of the many opportunities she has had in her life, she has been dedicated to giving back to her community both through her profession and volunteer service. She speaks frequently to churches about the dangers of human trafficking, another one of Elizabeth’s passionate advocacy roles. Her most recent presentations on this issue have been at First Baptist Church, United Church, and St. John Episcopal Church. She is especially committed to volunteer work with organizations serving women and girls like the Girl Scouts, PACE Center for Girls, the Refuge House, and the ZONTA Club of Tallahassee, a professional women’s organization committed to projects that improve the quality of life for women and girls at home and internationally.
Elizabeth, also, regularly serves others by providing free legal services to foreign-born U.S. military veterans and victims of abuse. Because of her outstanding efforts in this regard, she received the Florida Bar’s Pro Bono Service Award. That is only one of many recognitions she has received. Her awards include the Council on Crime and Delinquency Judicial Service Award, named among the 2010 “25 Women You Need to Know”, named “Woman of the Year in Law” by the Girl Scout Council of the Florida Panhandle, and Pineview Elementary School’s “Volunteer of the Year” for the time and effort she devoted to mentoring and tutoring an ESOL student. She currently serves on Chief Justice Labarga’s Pro Bono Committee.
Elizabeth feels it is important for those who have been blessed to “pay it forward”, by giving back to the community in ways that improve the lives of others. And her record of good work shows she has been doing just that. Congratulations, Elizabeth, as the Capital Outlook Newspaper’s PERSON OF THE WEEK.
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