President Obama Keeps His Promise to the American People and Takes Action on Immigration

Statement by Marlene M. Johnson, Executive Director and CEO of NAFSA


Rebecca Morgan, 202.495.2553,
Katie O’Connell, 202.495.2559,

WASHINGTON, November 20, 2014 – In response to President Obama's announcement of executive action on immigration, Marlene M. Johnson, executive director and CEO of NAFSA: Association of International Educators issued the following statement:

“We commend President Obama for following through with this necessary and lawful executive action to address the nation’s immigration crisis. For far too long, the country has waited for Congress to take action on this important issue, and has received no relief.

“Immigration, at its core, is about people and their hopes for better lives for themselves and their families. This is just as true for immigrants who come to the United States to work in the fields harvesting crops as it is for immigrants working in the laboratories at our most prestigious universities. Therefore, the President’s actions allow aspiring Americans to come out of the shadows while, at the same time, reducing the challenges faced by high-skilled immigrants who wish to become full contributing members in our communities.

“As we continue to lose our market share of globally mobile students and scholars to countries with friendlier immigration policies, we particularly applaud the President for recognizing the importance of having avenues for students to stay and work here.

“Again, we commend the President for his leadership on this issue and we look forward to working with the White House to implement these changes for our students, scholars, families, and communities. We also call upon Congress to work in a bipartisan way to create a realistic immigration system that keeps its promises to our nation and represents the values this country is founded upon.”

Read more about NAFSA’s priorities for immigration reform.