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JCWI Staff

Satbir Singh

Satbir Singh

Chief Executive

Satbir is a human rights advocate and campaigner who has been working on issues of access to justice, open government, press freedom and sustainable development in over twenty countries across Asia, the Middle East, and Africa since 2008. He is the founder and chair of the Indian Observatory for Democracy and Human Rights and is a rostered expert consultant in Peacebuilding and Access to Justice with the United Nations.

Satbir was born in Essex and has spent most of his life between London, New Delhi and New York. He is a second-generation immigrant, as a campaigner and as the British half of a ‘divided family’. As such, he is committed to ensuring fairness, equality and the rule-of-law in British immigration and asylum policy and he took over as Chief Executive in September 2017.

Satbir speaks Hindi and French and has degrees from the University of Oxford, SOAS and Columbia University. When he’s not working he enjoys cooking, photography and tending to his allotment.

Nicola Burgess JCWI2

Nicola Burgess

Legal Director

Nicola has ten years’ experience working in immigration and asylum law. She qualified as a solicitor in 2009 and is also an IAAS level 2 accredited caseworker. Nicola has a particular interest in legal aid work and assisting the most vulnerable: including victims of torture, those with mental health issues and victims of trafficking.

She has developed considerable expertise in representing foreign national prisoners in challenging their deportation and securing their release from detention. Nicola regularly secures damages on behalf of her clients who have been found to be unlawfully detained.

Nicola’s list of reported cases:

SSHD v Hassan Abdi and Afrah Khalaf v SSHD [2011] EWCA Civ 242

R (on the application of Aziz) v SSHD [2011] All ER (D) 237 (Feb)

Krawetskiy v SSHD [2013] EWHC 2325 Admin

ZA (Iraq) v SSHD [2015] EWCA Civ 168

Abunasir v SSHD [2015] EWHC 2145 (Admin)

AT and another (Article 8 ECHR – Child Refugee – Family Reunification: Eritrea) [2016] UKUT 227 (IAC)

Enny Choudhury

Enny Choudhury


Enny joined JCWI in January 2017. She qualified as a solicitor in February 2010, and is an IAAS Level 2 accredited caseworker and supervisor. Following qualification, Enny worked as a Judicial Assistant in the Court of Appeal where she developed her interest in immigration and asylum law. Enny is passionate about ensuring that immigration laws are fair and just, and that remedies under the law are accessible to everyone. She is committed to assisting the most vulnerable and marginalized people, including children applicants, and has a particular interest in Legal Aid work.

Her areas of expertise include asylum, applications under the Immigration Rules, applications based on Articles 3 and 8 of the ECHR, challenges to deportation, EAA applications and judicial review. Enny conducts advocacy before the First-Tier Tribunal. Enny also provides a weekly telephonic advice line for Unison members in all areas of immigration and asylum law.

Enny is committed to social mobility through education; she teaches English GCSE at a Saturday school and mentors children. She enjoys travel and reading.

Ellen Fotheringham JCWI

Ellen Fotheringham

Legal Assistant

Ellen is originally from Glasgow, where she spent the last three years working in various migrant support roles while studying for her law degree. 

Her passions are music, art and food and she is enjoying discovering what her new home in London has to offer for each. She likes  to spend as much of her free time as possible traveling far and wide, although her favourite place to be is the Scottish Islands, close to home.

Ruth Grove-White

Ruth Grove-White

Policy Adviser

Ruth is running a programme of Brexit-related advocacy for JCWI. She works as an independent consultant in the migration sector, and is an experienced trainer, evaluator and researcher. She was the Policy Director at the Migrants Rights Network from 2008 – 2015 and prior to joining MRN worked with minority rights charity European Dialogue, and for the International Organization for Migration.

Sairah Javed

Sairah Javed


Sairah joined JCWI in September 2017. She is a qualified solicitor and is an IAAS Level 2 accredited caseworker and supervisor. Sairah has been working in immigration and asylum law for more than seven years and is committed to helping vulnerable and marginalised people help gain access to justice and fight for their rights. She has extensive experience of working with victims of torture, trafficking, and domestic violence.

Her areas of expertise include asylum, applications under the Immigration Rules, challenges to deportation, EAA applications, entry clearance applications, and judicial review. Sairah conducts advocacy before the First-Tier and Upper Tribunal regularly.

She speaks Urdu and Punjabi fluently.

Reported cases;

MN and others (Ahmadis – country conditions – risk) Pakistan CG [2012] UKUT 00389 (IAC)

R (on the application of MK) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 1145

Sarah Marcus JCWI

Sarah Marcus

Communications Director (currently on maternity leave)

Sarah started her professional life as a publishing editor, working with high-profile novelists and non-fiction authors. She then decided on a career change and worked as a freelance journalist. Based in Tbilisi, Georgia, she reported on news, politics, culture and society in the former Soviet Union for leading international publications including the Washington Post, the New York TImes and the Independent.

While in Georgia she also worked as a researcher and writer for UNICEF. She returned to the UK and later switched career again, this time to work in strategic communications. At JCWI she brings together her media and communications experience for a cause to which she is strongly committed.

Chai Patel JCWI

Chai Patel

Legal & Policy Director

Chai joined JCWI in 2015 having covered a period of maternity leave for the Policy Director at the Migrants Rights Network. Prior to that he was in the Human Rights department at Leigh Day, working on abuse and human rights claims, and on the death penalty team at Reprieve, focussing on international strategic litigation,  casework, and investigation.

Chai studied English Literature at UCL, and later converted to Law. He was called to the Bar in 2010 and later cross-qualified as a solicitor. 

Tony Philip JCWI

Tony Philip

Office Manager

Tony joined JCWI from The Islington Law Centre as a casework Intern in 2010 and has since risen to become the Office Manager. He also manages JCWI's membership and publications administration.

In his spare time Tony sits on the committee board of the Islington Residents Association who represent residents on issues between landlord and tenant.

Lucia Vanzo JCWI

Lucia Vanzo

Training Coordinator

Lucia has been working for JCWI for over 10 years managing and developing the organisation’s Training Department. She is responsible for the efficient administration of all aspects of JCWI Training Department.

Prior to that Lucia worked for over 3 years  as a tour director. Originally from Italy, Lucia has made the UK her home. She  is fluent in both Italian and English and speaks good Spanish and French. Outside of work she enjoys travelling and country walks.